The Builder Magazine
December 1922 - Volume VIII - Number 12
Albert Gallatin Mackey
BY BRO. ROBERT I. CLEGG. OHIO
BORN AT Charleston, South Carolina, on March 12, 1807, this scholarly brother
lived to the age of 74 years, dying at the Hygeia Hotel at Fortress Monroe, Virginia,
June 21, 1881. He was buried by his bereaved family and sorrowing brethren at
Washington, D.C., on Sunday, June 26, with all the solemnity of the several
ceremonies of the Masonic Rites wherein he had so long been active in leadership.
Graduating with honours at the Charleston Medical College in 1834, Dr. Mackey
entered immediately the busy practice of his profession which chiefly occupied his
time until 1854 when his literary and Masonic labours engrossed his efforts. During
the Civil War Dr. Mackey was a Union adherent, and President Johnson appointed
him Collector of the Port. Some active interest was taken by him in polities and in a
contest for senatorial honours he was defeated by Senator Sawyer in the canvass.
Following this experience Dr. Mackey removed to Washington, D. C., in 1870.
In St. Andrews lodge, No. 10, at Charleston, South Carolina, in 1841, Dr. Mackey
was initiated, passed and raised. Soon thereafter he affiliated with Solomon's Lodge
No. 1, of the same city, becoming Worshipful Master in December, 1842. He became
Grand Secretary that year and held this office until 1867, for many years preparing
the reports of the Foreign Correspondence Committee of the Grand Lodge. He was
one of the founder members in the formation of Landmark Lodge, No. 76, in the year
Advanced and exalted in Capitular Freemasonry during the winter of 1841-1842, he
was elected High Priest in December, 1 844; was also elected Deputy Grand High
Priest in 1848 and successively re-elected in that position until 1855. In this year and
every year thereafter to 1867 he was elected as Grand High Priest of his State.
Elected General Grand High Priest in 1859, he continued in that office until 1868.
Dubbed and created a Knight Templar in South Carolina Commandery No. 1, in
1842, he was elected Eminent Commander in 1844, later being honoured as a Past
Grand Warden of the Grand Encampment of the United States.
Crowned a Sovereign Grand Inspector General of the Thirty-third and last Degree in
1844, he was for many years Secretary-General of the Supreme Council, Southern
Masonic Jurisdiction of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite.
Editorially he conducted for many years the Southern and Western Masonic
Miscellany. For two years he was editor-in-chief of the Masonic Quarterly Review.
In 1859 Dr. Mackey became editor of the Department of Masonic Miscellany in the
American Freemason, and for three years, beginning in 1872, he published Mackey's
Becoming a contributor to the Voice of Masonry in 1875, Dr. Mackey continued
actively his writings in that publication until 1878 when his failing health completely
checked his further labourist for that periodical.
Prolific as an author his books included the History of Freemasonry in seven
volumes, the Encyclopedia of Freemasonry in two volumes, Symbolism of
Freemasonry, Masonic Jurisprudence, Manual of the Fodge, Book of the Chapter,
Principles of Masonic Faw, Fexicon of Freemasonry and the Mystic Tie.
After Dr. Mackey, located at Washington D.C., he affiliated with Fafayette Fodge,
No. 19, Fafayette Chapter, No. 5, and Washington Commandery, No. 1.
The funeral services in Washington on Sunday, June 26, 1881, were begun at All
Souls Church, Unitarian, of which Dr. Mackey was a member, and were conducted by
the pastor. Then followed the ceremonies of a Lodge of Sorrow, Rose Croix Chapter,
Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, Southern Masonic Jurisdiction, and were in
charge of the venerable General Albert Pike and his associate officers.
The long white flowing hair of the patriarchal Sovereign Grand Commander endowed
him with a crowned glory as he from the pulpit uttered the solemn words over the
dead body of his old friend. Their intimate fraternal relations quickened in the
speaker a multitude of memories and he was deeply affected. Brother Pike's stem lips
trembled with emotion many times, especially when he descended from the pulpit,
took the flaming torch in his hand, waved it, and repeatedly summoned with his loud
resounding words "Brother, we mourn for thee; we call upon thee to answer us. Dost
thou hear the call?"
Just as Brother Pike said these words, a ray of sunshine from the window at the west
streamed in splendour across the church. His hoary head was thereby aflame with a
glowing halo of light like unto the vision of some sturdy stately saint of old. The tang
of sorrow in his tones as he continued sadly with the words of the ritual - "Our
Brother answers not our call" - heightened with the tinge of assurance the striking
The remains were interred in Glenwood Cemetery with the rites of the Symbolic
Lodge in charge of Most Worshipful Noble D. Larner, Grand Master of the District of
Dr. Mackey as a lecturer had nationally a deservedly high reputation. He was always
most interesting and instmctive. Possessing a very pleasing address, he could deeply
impress the favourable attention he invariably awakened in an audience. As an after-
dinner speaker he was declared to be second to none in the United States, his keen
wit, lively repartee, and remarkable anecdotal powers causing his society to be sought
and solicited on every possible occasion.
Of stalwart and commanding presence and richly cultured discourse Dr. Mackey was
in close personal charm at once gentle and dignified, acute in his warm practical
sympathies for all suffering humanity, and deeply dowered with a strong faculty for
friendship firm as the hills everlasting.
The intense esteem his friends held of Dr. Mackey is well shown by the official letter
sent out at his death by the Sovereign Grand Commander of the Southern Masonic
Jurisdiction of the Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite. General Albert Pike wrote this
"Sickness and old age have brought the ending of his days to the Dean of the Supreme
Council, its Secretary-General, Brother Albert Gallatin Mackey. Born at Charleston,
in South Carolina, on the 12th of March, 1807, made a Mason there, it is said, in the
year 1 84 1 ; he became a member of the Supreme Council and Secretary General in
1844, and continued to be both until his death at Fortress Monroe, in Virginia, on the
20th of June, 1881.
"Brother Mackey had lived all his life among gentlemen, and had the manners and
habits of a gentleman. Tall, erect, of spare but vigorous frame, his somewhat harsh
but striking features were replete with intelligence and amiability; he conversed well,
and was liked as a genial and companionable man, of a cheerful, tolerant and kindly
nature, who, if he had quarrels with individuals, had none with the world. Idolized by
his wife and children, he loved them devotedly, and suffered intensely when, one
after another, his two intelligent and amiable daughters died. He had many friends,
and made enemies, as men of strong will and positive convictions will always surely
do. He plotted no harm against any one, and sought no revenge, even when he did
not forgive, not being of a forgiving race for he was a McGregor, having kinship with
"Masonry will not soon lose as great a man, and she may well put dust upon her head
and wear sackcloth in her lodges, where, in Masonry, his heart always was.
"Of course, as he grew old, he had his crosses and troubles, and fortune was not kind
to him. Adversity may be profitable; but the world goes too hardly with too many of
us; and Sallust truly says:
'"In grief and sorrows, death is a rest from troubles and not a misfortune.'
"A great man hath fallen in Israel; and, in the words of Pushmataha, the Chahta Chief,
it is like the falling of a huge oak in the woods. The fall will be heard afar off, and
the sound be re-echoed from many and far-off lands.
"Upon the reading of this letter in the Bodies of our Obedience, the altars and
working tools will be draped in black and the brethren will wear the proper badge of
mourning during the space of sixty days. And may our Father which is in Heaven
have you always in his holy keeping."
At a Special Communication of the Grand Lodge of the District of Columbia, the
following Memorial was presented by a Committee headed by Brother Charles F.
"Our illustrious Brother, Albert Gallatin Mackey, is no more! He died at Fortress
Monroe, Va., on the 20th day of June, 1881, at the venerable age of 74, and was
buried at Washington on Sunday, June 26th, 1881, with the highest honours of the
Craft, all Rites and Orders of Masonry uniting in the last sad services over his
"The announcement of his death has carried a genuine sentiment of sorrow wherever
Freemasonry is known. His ripe scholarship, his profound knowledge of Masonic law
and usage, his broad views of Masonic philosophy, his ceaseless and invaluable
literary labourist in the service of the Order, his noble ideal of its character and
mission, as well as his genial personal qualities and his lofty character, had united to
make him personally known and widely respected and beloved by the Masonic world.
"While this Grand Lodge shares in the common sorrow of the Craft everywhere at
this irreparable loss, she can properly lay claim to a more intimate and peculiar sense
of bereavement, inasmuch as our illustrious brother had been for many years an active
member of this body, Chairman of the Committee on Jurisprudence, and an advisor
ever ready to assist our deliberations with his knowledge and counsel.
"In testimony of our affectionate respect for his memory the Grand Lodge jewels, and
insignia will be appropriately draped, and its members wear the usual badge of
mourning for thirty days. A memorial page of our proceedings will also be dedicated
to the honour of his name.
"We extend to his family [a widow and three sons survived Dr. Mackey] the
assurance of our sincere and respectful sympathy, and direct that an attested copy of
this minute be transmitted to them."
— o —
TRIAL AND CONVICTION OF AMERICAN MASONIC FEDERATION
BY BRO. CHARLES C. HUNT, DEPUTY GRAND SECRETARY, IOWA
The present article concludes Brother Hunt's account of the false claims, the
indictment, trial and conviction of The American Masonic Federation, with
headquarters at Salt Lake City, of which Mathew McBlain Thomson was president.
Brother Hunt's four articles, the first of which appeared in THE BUILDER for
September, comprise a complete record of all the important points in the case.
I HAVE already described the false claims made by the American Masonic
Federation to Scottish Rite and other Masonic prerogatives in preceding accounts of
the trial and conviction of Mathew McBlain Thomson, president of that organization
of spurious "Masonry." The reader is requested to consult THE BUILDER for
September, October, and November. In the present instance I shall give an account of
the trial held at Salt Lake City, Utah, early in May of this year.
Three distinguished Scotch Masons agreed to accept a subpoena and testify for the
Government: they were Brothers David Reid, Joseph Inglis, and John A. Forrest.
David Reid is Grand Secretary of the Grand Lodge of Scotland. Joseph Inglis is
Provincial Grand Master of Kincardineshire; also Past Senior Grand Warden of the
Grand Lodge; Past Master of both the Rose Croix Chapter and Consistory; and Past
Grand Prior of the Knights Templar, and a Thirty-Second degree Mason. John A.
Forrest is Grand Secretary of the Royal Order of Scotland; Past "Provincial Grand
Master of Midlothian; Past Master of his Rose Croix Chapter and Consistory, and a
Thirty-Second degree Mason.
These brothers testified that Mother Kilwinning Lodge never granted a charter to
work any except the Craft degrees, and that none of the so-called higher degrees
originated in Scotland. David Reid testified that he was a member of Mother
Kilwinning Lodge, and that she had never granted to any of her daughter lodges
power to charter other lodges, and in fact Kilwinning was the only Scotch lodge that
ever had chartering power. Brothers Inglis and Reid both testified that Mother
Kilwinning Lodge kept a copy of every charter issued by her and that she had never
granted one to a lodge in France, as Thomson claimed she had done.
Thomson was asked to show "a history, any place" which supplies the link of granting
a charter from Mother Kilwinning Lodge to the Mother Lodge of St. John, of
Marseilles, France, but he could not do so.
Brothers Reid and Inglis also testified that the Grand Council of Rites was a very
small body with no reputation, Masonically, in Scotland. Brother Inglis first heard of
it in 1880 and Brother Reid in 191 1. In 1912 it was practically declared clandestine
by the Grand lodge of Scotland, and her members forbidden to affiliate with it.
Thereupon, Peter Spence, who had signed Thomson's Patent, withdrew from it.
In 1914 Thomson and Robert Jamieson were expelled from Masonry by the Grand
Lodge of Scotland on the charge of conferring clandestine Masonic degrees.
On cross-examination Thomson was asked to name a Scotch history that anywhere
mentioned the Grand Council of Rites, and he could not do so. He was also
compelled to acknowledge that the leading Scotch historian, D. Murray Lyon, did not
mention this so-called Grand Council.
Thomson claimed to have been made a Mason in a lodge which had been chartered by
Melrese St. Johns Lodge, but David Reid testified that this lodge never chartered
daughter lodges, and that the lodge from which Thomson claimed a charter, if it ever
existed, was clandestine; that Thomson did not become a Mason until after he was
healed in 1889, in St. James Lodge No. 125.
In this connection the following extracts from the Proceedings of the Grand Lodge of
Scotland are interesting:
From Proceedings of meeting of April 29, 1880:
"Memorial anent the clandestine introduction of Mathew Thomson into Lodge
operative, Ayr, No. 138, and the issuing of a diploma in his favour.
"The Committee having considered the whole case, Find that Mathew Thomson is not
a Freemason, and that he could not therefore be affiliated to the Lodge Operative,
Ayr: Find that certain of the Office-Bearers of that lodge knew that Mr. Thomson was
not a member of the Order when they pretended to affiliate him: Find that the return
made by the lodge to Grand Lodge under date June 12, 1876, certifying that Mr.
Thomson was Entered, Passed and Raised in that lodge, was false and fraudulent:
Find that lodge has produced no regular books, and that such as have been produced
are in many places written in pencil and grossly irregular, and contain no evidence of
Mr. Thomson's pretended affiliation: Therefore recommend Grand Lodge to instruct
the name of the said Mathew Thomson to be deleted from the Register of Intrants,
and ordain him to deliver up the Diploma of Membership issued on 12th June 1876;
and further recommend that Grand Lodge suspend the Lodge Operative, Ayr, No.
138, and debar it from meeting for Masonic purposes until it is the pleasure of the
Grand Lodge to withdraw its suspension. Further, instruct the Grand Secretary to call
for delivery of the charter and minute and other books of the lodge, if any such exist,
and retain the same in his possession."
From Proceedings of Meeting of June 24, 1880:
"Grand Secretary produced the diploma which had been issued to Mr. Mathew
Thomson, under a false return in name of the Lodge Operative, Ayr, No. 138, in June
1876, and tabled a letter from the Lodge St. James, Ayr, No. 125, anent the admission
of the said Mathew Thomson by affiliation or otherwise, as Grand Committee may
direct. Remitted to the Petitions and Complaints Committee to consider and report."
From Proceedings of Meeting of July 29, 1880:
"On the recommendation of the Sub-Committee on Petitions and Complaints, Grand
Secretary was instructed to direct the Lodge St. James, Newton-on- Ayr, No. 125, as
to the admission of Mr. Mathew Thomson referred to in the minute of Grand
Committee of date 24th June last, - and on being satisfied that the conditions on
which the applicant's admission is authorized have been complied with, to issue a new
diploma to the said Mathew Thomson."
Thus it is seen that this is not the first time that Thomson has been concerned with
In March 1911 Thomson published the following account of a visit paid by him to
David Reid, Grand Secretary of Scotland:
"From London we went to Edinburgh, where, we visited the Grand Secretary in the
temporary offices of the Grand Lodge in Charlotte Square, the Grand Lodge Hall
being closed for repairs and enlargement. We sent in our card as President of the
A.M.F. and were received as such and had a long and pleasant talk with him, in the
course of which we informed him of conditions here, conditions which made
necessary the formation of the A.M.F. , explained to him the source from which we
derived our authority, showed him our charters and explained to him our aims and
objects; showed him from our publications that we made no claim whatever to have
authority from or connection with the Grand Lodge of Scotland; that we did claim
Scottish ancestry, but from a source more ancient than the Grand Lodge, namely from
the Mother Lodge Kilwinning, through her son, the Chevalier Ramsay, through whom
the degrees went to the Scottish Mother Lodge of Marseilles, from thence through the
Lodge Polar Star, established in New Orleans in 1794, to the Supreme Council of
Louisiana; from it to the Grand Lodge Inter-Montana, which is the foundation of the
"Brother Reid informed us (as we had been informed before) that the only object that
the Grand Lodge of Scotland had in the matter was representation made to her that an
officer of Grand Lodge (Brother Peter Spence) was granting Blue Lodge charters to
parties in America; and that the A.M.F. claimed to work by authority from the Grand
Lodge of Scotland; the first charge had been disproved by Brother Spence, and what I
said now had disposed of the latter."
SCORED AS A FALSEHOOD
Brother Reid testified that the only true part of this account was the fact of the call.
The interview was very short, about two minutes only. He had remained standing
throughout. The only other person present was Brother Joseph Inglis. Thomson had
not shown any charters or made any explanation of his aims or objects, neither had he
shown any publications or made any explanations of his claims. Brother Inglis
testified that the conversation was very formal; that Mr. Reid never sat down and
practically bowed him out. He was asked if the meeting was a courteous or
discourteous one. He replied: "It was cold, but courteous."
On cross-examination Thomson was asked in regard to this interview, and admitted
that the conversation lasted about ten minutes, that he had shown no charters, but had
shown his authority, by handing Mr. Reid a copy of his magazine, which explained
his authority, but he could not tell which copy it was or what article he referred to as
giving the authority. On being recalled, Brothers Reid and Inglis testified that
Thomson had left no magazine or documents of any kind whatever.
Bergers, one of the defendants, testified that in 1913 he went to Europe to investigate
for himself to find out what he could about the organization, and how it was regarded
there. He visited the Grand Council of Rites, the meeting of which was postponed
one month so that he could be there. At this meeting there were twenty-eight persons
present, and the meeting lasted about three or four hours in the afternoon.
He went to Ayr and visited St. James Lodge there. The members of the lodge had not
been informed of his coming but the Master called a meeting after his arrival. In
answer to the question: "How did he call the members together?" Bergera replied:
"They were called by telephone, where I saw several other brothers, and they gave me
an introduction. They told me it was the Master of St. James 125, and they said - 1
said, I desire to visit the lodge, and they said 'very well' they were going to have their
regular meeting that night and also they were working the Craft degrees on one of the
However, the meeting was held in the afternoon, instead of at night, to accommodate
some visitors who wished to return home that night.
Bergera was in Scotland ten days and visited two lodges. The second lodge was the
lodge in Kilmarnock, which met in a building with the name "Kilmarnock Lodge"
over the door. Brothers Reid and Inglis testified that there were four lodges in
Kilmarnock, but none of them with that name; that there was no building there with
the name "Kilmarnock Lodge" above the door, and that the building in which the
lodges met had simply the inscription "Masonic Hall."
Bergera testified that he had not visited, nor attempted to visit, the Grand Lodge of
Scotland. He spent five days in London, and visited one lodge there, but he did not
visit nor attempt to visit the Grand Lodge of England. He spent nine or ten days in
Paris and visited one lodge, but had not visited nor attempted to visit the Grand Orient
or Grand Lodge of France. Thus, although he testified that his sole purpose in going
to Europe was to investigate the standing of his organization, and he spent several
days in each place, he visited only two lodges in Scotland, one in London and one in
Paris, and did not attempt to go anywhere where authoritative information could be
Thomson gave considerable space in his magazine to the Proceedings of the National
Masonic Congress, in Zurich, Switzerland, in 1920, supposed to be composed of the
representatives of the Masonic powers of the world, and of which he was elected
President. On cross-examination he could name but eight people who were present at
that Congress, and Joseph Inglis testified that none of the powers there represented
was considered regular by the Grand Lodge of Scotland.
THOMSON MADE A FORTUNE
Mention has been made that considerable money was collected by this organization,
and that Thomson could not, or would not, tell what had become of it. According to
the testimony, the following fees were charged:
Grand Lodge Charter
Election — — $50.00
Lodge Charter 25.00
Master Mason's Diploma — 5.00
Mark Master's Diploma 4.00
Affiliation Diploma 2.50
Duplicate Diploma 2.00
Past Master's Diploma 2.50
Catechisms, each degree — .15
Minimum fee for Craft Degrees, $35.00; of which the lodge received $5.00.
Minimum fee for higher degrees, Fourth to Thirty-Third, $135.00, of which $25.00
was for paraphernalia.
The thirty-three degrees were sometimes given in an hour's time; frequently all of
them were conferred in one evening.
There were many other facts brought out in the trial but I have here mentioned only
the leading ones. From this it will be seen that the Government clearly proved that
Thomson obtained his members by misrepresenting the facts, both as to his authority
and regularity, also as to the recognition that his members would receive from
Masons abroad, and that in the promotion of his scheme the United States mails were
The jury brought in a verdict of guilty against each of the defendants on every count
charged in the indictment. In this connection it is well to remember that neither the
Judge nor any member of the jury were members of the Masonic fraternity. The
regular Judge of the Utah District of the United States District Court is a Mason; to
avoid any charge of prejudice an outside judge, Judge Wade of Iowa, was assigned to
try the case. In giving his instructions to the jury, among other things, he said:
"Therefore, gentlemen, as I said in the beginning, this involves no case here before
this jury as to which of the branches of the Masonic order is legitimate, except in so
far as that question inheres in the simple questions in this case, which is not a
question of determining which of these great branches, or minor branches, is right or
wrong, but the question here is, did these men on trial conspire to commit a fraud on
their neighbours or on their fellow men? That I will go into more fully. Keep that in
"It is a historic matter of common knowledge that there is an organization known as
Free Masons or Free and Accepted Masons, or Masons, known for many generations.
Whether that organization is right or wrong, whether it had conducted its business in
the right way, whether its spirit is right or wrong, speaking generally, we have
nothing to do with it. ..."
"Sometime back, the people of this country, acting through their agents, enacted a
statute through Congress which said that a man who should conceive and organize a
conspiracy with others to defraud somebody, and then use the mails to carry out that
scheme, that man should be punished. Now that is all the Grand Jury in this Court
did when last year it brought in this indictment. And bear in mind, gentlemen, as I
tried to impress upon you before, that the action of the Grand Jury must not in any
manner enter into your consideration in determining the question of guilt. ..."
"So this indictment was brought in charging these three defendants with having done
three specific things; combined, organized or maintained a conspiracy, with the intent
to defraud, and used the mails for carrying out that fraud. That is all. The Grand Jury
didn't indict anybody here for competing with some other organization of Masonry,
had nothing to do with those organizations, whatsoever, neither do we.
"They charged that they conceived a plan to defraud and used the mails to carry it out,
and that they did that by conspiring together, making an arrangement to carry it out."
A CASE OF FRAUD
He then quoted from the indictment, and said:
"You will observe now from this recital, or these recitals, that this is not a mere case
of a dispute of title. That is involved in it, but that is not all that is involved in it. It is
not a mere case of the question as to whether or not they got power under this
endorsement on this charter from Fouisiana Council. Nor is it solely the question as
to the standing or authority of the Council of Rites of Scotland. These questions are
involved, but there are many other questions involved.
"Of course now, any change in this indictment, which is not proven by the evidence
must not be considered. I am reading it to try to get to your minds what we are trying
to settle in this matter. The Government charges in this indictment that these things
were in the minds and hearts of these people; that they were false, all of them were
false, though of course it is not essential for the Government to prove that all of them
were false in order to convict; it is only necessary that they shall prove beyond a
reasonable doubt that the fraud which they claim they had in mind consisted of some
one or more of the things which they had conceived, sufficient to constitute a fraud.
"To illustrate, if somebody sold you a piece of land - or to make it more practical, if
someone sold you a certain horse, representing to you that he was an expert in the
genealogy of this horse and that his breeding was of a certain strain on back two or
three generations, which made it a valuable horse, and he also represented to you that
the horse had a record upon a lawful track of 2:05 as a trotter, and the man who was
buying him relied upon these statements, and had no opportunity of testing them out
to see whether they were true, and later he found that he did have this family tree
which was valuable, but he also found out that he never made that record at all, that
was a lie, that would be a fraud by which he induced him to part with his money,
although only the question of his record was involved in the fraud, the other
representation being true.
"So that, even if it were established in a given case where the question of the family
tree, so to speak, of some society, the Odd Fellows, Masons, Knights of Columbus,
Elks, whatever it might be, was a certain thing, if that was the only thing alleged, and
it was not proven that was false, of course there would be no fraud, but if in
connection with that representation were made other representations with relation to
the quality of the organization, or character of the organization, the benefits of the
organization, the thing the man was getting for his money, aside from the question of
the family tree; if false representations were made which induced him to part with his
money, that is to say, representations which were wilfully false, then of course there
would be fraud and the plan to represent these things which were wilfully and
intentionally false, would constitute the ground for a conviction, if they were within
the things charged in the indictment . . . . "
"A false representation may be by word of mouth, it may be by acts, it may be
silence; it may be by all combined. We consider what effect the particular thing, the
particular act would naturally have on the mind of the other fellow. To determine
what the natural effect would be upon the mind of the other fellow we have got to sort
of look at it from the other fellow's standpoint, and consider the question with
relation, for instance, to membership in this organization. What did the other fellow
want the membership for? What did he think he was getting? What did he in fact get?
Did he get what he bought? If not, was his failure to get what he bought and paid for
the result of misrepresentations either by word or conduct or act, in writing or orally,
by the defendants or any of them or any of their authorized agents, authorized to do
the things that they did? That is this case.
"As I recall there was evidence here of representation made to parties, witnesses upon
the stand here, that membership in these organizations opened the doors of the lodge
rooms of Europe, and all countries, generally speaking, or words to that effect, to the
member that was sought to join. I am not stating words exactly, and I am only using
this as illustrating the principles involved. You are the final judges of what the acts
are. But if a man were induced to enter an organization of any kind upon a
representation that membership in that organization would grant him affiliation and
brotherhood relations with some great established, organized, permanent organization
in South America or Canada or any other country, if that were not true, and the man
that made the representation knew it was not true, and he made the representation
with the intention of getting his money, that would be a fraud, even though the
organization had the right genealogical tree.
"So, gentlemen, we have an organization here now, composed of a number of
individuals with organizers employed and sent out, and memberships taken and
memberships paid for. In any big organization you will find some organizer or some
agent who at times will not do the right thing. But a wrongful act upon the part of an
agent or organizer, except insofar as the same was induced or authorized or approved
by the defendants in this particular case - if it was outside of his regular and
authorized work, of course it would not be binding upon these defendants, - but
insofar as you can find from the evidence the scope and power given by these
defendants knowingly and intentionally to organizers, of course the acts of such
organizers would be the same as the acts of the defendants.
"So, gentlemen, you see it is a question as to whether or not the Government has
proven - they have got to prove that these things were false, the defendants do not
have to prove that they are true, the burden is on the Government all the way
through. Has the Government proven any of these charges of intended
misrepresentation or fraud which they set out in this indictment? If so, was that of
such a nature or character that it would have carried out - constituted a fraud on the
person who was induced to join as a member? Now, what the evidence is and what
these specific things are, you are to determine.
"I have repeatedly said that a fraud is not a mistake. The law is practical common
sense. No man was ever convicted of a fraud when he was acting in good faith. A
man might sue to recover money or land on the ground of mutual mistake but as to a
criminal offense, a man to be convicted of a fraud must have knowledge, must have
the wrongful intent and purpose."
Thomson and his partners in crime were found guilty. In passing sentence Judge
Wade scored them after the following manner:
"Nobody can hear this evidence in this case without being convinced, absolutely
convinced, that this thing has been a fraudulent scheme from the beginning. I can see
where an ignorant person might find some possible excuse for the methods employed
in this case. For intelligent people and experienced people to try to convince the
Court that this organization and this plan and this work that had been going on is on
the square - it can't be done.
"Of course now we are living in a time when some of the brightest minds in the
country are devoting themselves to securing money by short cuts, by taking
advantage of the gullible for their enterprises. In fact that is one of the dominant
crimes of the present time. I know of one state in which in the last two years, within
two, there has been sold over twenty-nine million dollars worth of stock in packing
houses which were never built, and practically every dollar of the money lost, just by
shrewd practices, by trying to get the other fellow's money in some way without
working for it.
AMERICAN MASONIC FEDERATION A FRAUD
"Now, of course, after all that was stated in this case from the beginning and all
through I confess that I was astounded when I heard Mr. Thomson testify that there
was no pretence, that there was no record anywhere of a charter to Marseilles Lodge,
on the existence of which lay the right and practically the foundation of all claims of
legitimacy on that branch of the case and to have him admit that such a lodge existed
only in tradition (I realize that some things can be proven by tradition, but tradition
cannot exist with one man, tradition must have, before it has any force as proof - such
general recognition among men in that particular occupation or relation that it forces
itself upon the mind as a truth the record of which has been lost) and it was conceded
on the witness stand that so far as this particular thing was concerned there was no
record anywhere and no one who was skilled in the history of Masonry had ever met
any such a tradition so far as the record in this case is concerned, in any history or
book or pamphlet or anything else outside of this organization.
"So was I surprised when I found that the Council of Rites of Scotland which had
been one of the chief points urged by these gentlemen, had no record behind it but a
few years and it was represented - entirely aside from the question of the origin and
history of this organization and those that preceded it - it was represented time and
time again without dispute to these poor devils that were led largely by these
attractions to an ancient organization and to the rites and rituals of the organization, it
was represented to them specifically and it has not been denied that by virtue of their
association with this organization the doors of Masonry the world over were open to
them outside of the United States, which is of course an absurd claim under the
evidence in this case.
"Then the trip that Bergera made to Europe on the investigation, in view of what
transpired according to his own testimony, has all the appearance of being a scheme
or plan that he might come back here and state to those whose membership was
sought his capacity to enter the lodges of Europe to support their claim, that the
members immediately on getting across the water would have the doors wide open to
"And then after making a trip and going to one or two lodges or three under peculiar
circumstances, in fact never going to the Grand Lodge of Scotland, and that was
included in the representation made, that is to say, all Europe was included, never
going to the Grand Lodge of Scotland, the Grand Lodge of England and never going
to the Grand Lodge of France, whatever it is called, and coming back here no doubt to
back up the representation that membership in this organization was opening the
doors of all Masonic Orders, all of the regular Masonic Orders in Europe - it was a
pretence, gentlemen, you can't come to any other conclusion. If Bergera went over
there for the purpose of confirming what these organizers were representing and
which is not denied here, he certainly would have gone to the Grand Lodge of
Scotland or England or France or Germany or somewhere to find out whether the
doors would be open to these fellows that were joining their ranks.
"But it is not necessary to recite the details. One cannot listen to this evidence
without being forced to the conclusion that so far as the representation as to the
standing and the brotherhood and the association of people with which they would
become immediately affiliated was concerned, that aside entirely from the genealogy
of the lodge, nobody can claim that there was any truth in what was said except
insofar as they had access to certain lodges with which Mr. Thomson through his
relation had some affiliation.
"The spectacle of Mr. Thomson going to Switzerland to this great conference, and
parading afterwards through the journal a conference where eight men from the entire
world were present - that in itself is sufficient to condemn the whole thing and the
manner in which this business had been done is sufficient in itself. No pretence here
on the part of the defendants that this money was kept in any businesslike way for the
benefit of this organization. What became of it I don't know but there was more than
a million dollars taken in here, of that there can be no question in view of the prices
charged for little printed sheets of paper in the form of diplomas and certificates and
things of that kind, entirely aside from the membership fee. What became of that
money is not indicated here. The head of this organization testified before the Court
that he didn't know and in fact had some difficulty in recalling whether there was ever
an account of the organization in a bank anywhere in the world.
"As far as the Secretary is concerned, there is no suggestion of a report indicating that
this business was conducted as an honest organization, not a word.
"So that, gentlemen, there is only one thing for the Court to do. If it were not for the
age of Mr. Thomson at this time there would be a long prison sentence, because I
think he is the chief actor. I think he is more responsible than anyone else. As far as
Bergera is concerned, of course, I cannot understand at all how a man would presume
to parade himself as the Treasurer-General of the organization of ten thousand
members which had received from them in the neighbourhood of a million or more
dollars and never handle a cent of the money. I cannot understand it at all, that is all,
that any honest man would allow his name to be used in that connection under such
condition and the concealment of the methods of doing business and where this
money went even up to the present time. I cannot comprehend the whole thing.
"There is only one thing that saves these men a long prison term. I don't feel justified
in sending any of these men to prison any longer than I do Mr. Thomson. As I say,
when it comes to this point in a trial of the case, the charity of the law asserts itself.
Old age and sickness, of course, have a strong appeal to the Court, when it comes to
the question of a prison term and I think that the District Attorney has been very
generous in his suggestion. This Court hasn't really any power to impose a penalty
here which would be adequate punishment for this thing that has been going on when
we stop to think of the honest fellows who parted with their fifty or seventy-five or a
hundred and fifty dollars for membership in this organization. So far as the evidence
in this case is concerned, not one dollar of it was ever used for any of the business of
the society except to carry on this work of getting members. Not a word of charity or
charitable fund or anything of that kind before this Court.
"I am very much inclined to be lenient in all things. I am inclined to look in a
charitable way upon the mistakes of men, but this thing has in it that deliberateness
and continuous conduct which sort of overcomes my tendency.
"Stand up, gentlemen.
"The judgment of this Court is that each one of you serve a period of two years in
Fort Leavenworth Prison and each one of you pay a fine of five thousand dollars and
THE POINT OF THE TRIAL
Before this case went to trial it was not known just what matters the Court would
require the Government to prove. Thomson's claim as to the regularity of the
established Masonic institutions before mentioned in the first part of this paper, the
Government was prepared to disprove, had the Court so ruled. However, the ruling of
the Court was that the regularity of the established Masonic lodges did not enter into
this case, and the following named witnesses who had been summoned by the
Government were not called upon to testify, although they were instructed to be on
hand in case they were needed, and especially to listen to the testimony offered by the
defendants' witnesses: Frederick W. Hamilton, Grand Secretary, Grand Lodge of
Massachusetts; William L. Boyden, Librarian of the Supreme Council, Washington,
D.C.; Charles A. Conover, General Grand Secretary, General Grand Chapter, R.A.M.
of the United States; Robert A. Shirrefs, Grand Secretary General, Northern Supreme
Council; Ossian Lang, Historian, Grand Lodge of New York, and Charles C. Hunt,
Deputy Grand Secretary, Grand Lodge of Iowa.
— o —
KIT CARSON - A MASON OF THE FRONTIER
BY BRO. F.T. CHEETHAM, NEW MEXICO
It has often been observed that 1 809 was, of all the years of its century, most prodigal
in giving to the world great men, for it was during that twelve-month that Lincoln,
Darwin, Gladstone, Tennyson, Holmes, Poe, Edward Fitzgerald, etc., etc, were bom.
After reading the following appreciations of Kit Carson ye editor believes that many
readers will feel inclined to add to the list of illustrious men born in 1809 that of this
pioneer who, despite the cmdity of his environment and the roughness of his work,
was a gentleman and a hero. It is high time that Kit Carson was rescued from dime
novels and schoolboy romances and delivered back to serious history and biography
where mature men may learn what a towering man he was. Brother Cheetham made
his researches expressly at the request of THE BUILDER and thereby became
deserving of our heartiest thanks, which are hereby rendered in full measure.
WHEN THE WRITER first set out to write a sketch of this worthy brother he was
confronted by a dearth of reliable information as to Kit Carson's Masonic record that
rendered the task discouraging. When the question was asked of those few remaining
brothers in the Craft who knew him they would invariably shrug their shoulders after
the custom of the country and say, "I don't know." It was not until after a trip was
made by the writer to Santa Fe and an extended search was made among the records
of the old Montezuma Lodge which worked under a Missouri charter, now in the
archives of Montezuma Lodge No. 1 of New Mexico, that any definite information
was obtained as to the time and place of the initiation, passing, and raising of the late
Brother Carson. It is true that the Grand Lodge of New Mexico had erected a stone,
the third of such memorials, over his grave in Taos, also an iron fence around the
grave; and it was generally known and asserted that he was in fact a Freemason, but
that does not satisfy the student of history.
Brother Carson was born in Madison County, Kentucky, December 24th, 1809.
While very young he migrated with his parents to Howard County, Missouri, where
he obtained what little education he ever received, except in the school of the great
out-of-doors. When but sixteen he joined a party en route for Santa Fe and soon after
his arrival at that place he proceeded to Fernando de Taos, or Taos as it is called for
short, which thereafter became "home" to him during the remainder of his days.
From that time on he led a very active life, having been consecutively engaged in the
occupations of trapper, hunter, trader, scout, guide, soldier and Indian agent. The
range of his activities extended from Chihuahua on the south to the Canadian frontier
on the north; from the city of Washington, whither he went a number of times on
official business, on the east, to the limpid waters of the Pacific, on the west. In fact
we have obtained a photograph of him, taken in Boston. He made at least five trips,
possibly seven, to California and when we consider that all his travels west of
Westport were accomplished on horseback, we must admit that his was a life of
activity. He was chief scout and guide of the first three of the Fremont expeditions all
of which were successful; and while he did not accompany the General on the fourth
ill-fated expedition, yet it fell his lot to shelter that great man from the storm. The
General in writing home to his wife about the disastrous expedition, from Taos, on
January 27, 1849, said in part:-
"I write you from the house of our good friend Carson. This morning a cup of
chocolate was brought me, while yet in bed. To an overworn, overworked, much
fatigued and starving traveller, these little luxuries of the world offer an interest
which in your comfortable home it is not possible for you to conceive. While in the
enjoyment of this luxury, then, I pleased myself in imagining how gratified you
would be in picturing me here in Kit's care, whom you will fancy constantly occupied
and constantly uneasy in endeavouring to make me comfortable. How little could
you have dreamed of this while he was enjoying the pleasant hospitality of your
father's house! The furthest thing then from your mind was that he would ever repay
me here." (1)
There can be no doubt that Brother Carson was prepared to become a Mason in his
heart for some time before he presented himself for initiation. His early associations
with Governor Bent, Colonel St. Vrain, both of whom were Masons, and with
General Fremont, who no doubt was also a member, predisposed him to a favourable
opinion of the Fraternity.
We know that while he was with Fremont in California a movement headed by
Eugerilo Macnamara, a Catholic priest, was set on foot to drive out or exterminate all
Americans, the objects thereof being stated in a memorial addressed to the Mexican
President, as follows:
"I propose, with the aid and approbation of your excellency, to place in Upper
California a colony of Irish Catholics. I have a triple object in making this
proposition. I wish, in the first place, to advance the cause of Catholicism. In the
second, to contribute to the happiness of my countrymen. Thirdly, I desire to put an
obstacle in the way of further usurpations on the part of an irreligious and anti-
Catholic nation." (2)
Carson knew of the prompt action of General Fremont in saving the American
inhabitants of Upper or Northern California from massacre by prosecuting what was
known locally as the "Bear Flag War"; and that by his promptness, energy and skill
he reduced the northern half of the Territory, in all of which Carson was a
participant. He knew that when Admiral Sir George Seymore, with the priest
Macnamara on board, arrived at Monterey to raise the British flag, the Stars and
Stripes were already floating over the city, nailed to the masthead and there to stay.
As a testimonial to Kit's fame at that time, we have Lieutenant Walpole, an officer in
the British Admiral's fleet, who in writing home to London said in part, in describing
"He has one or two with him who enjoy a high reputation in the prairies. Kit Carson
is as well known there as a duke is in Europe."
When Brother Carson returned to New Mexico, he found that his brother-in-law,
Charles Bent, who was the first American Civil Governor of New Mexico and a
Freemason, together with others of his closest and most intimate friends, had been
assassinated in a most cruel and inhuman manner; and that religious fanaticism had
sought to accomplish by the firebrand and dagger what the soldier had not dared to
attempt with the sword.
And so in our pilgrimage to Santa Fe we learned that Christopher Carson was duly
initiated an Entered Apprentice March 29, 1854, was passed June 17 and raised
December 26 of the same year. He was living at the time at Rayado in what is now
Colfax county. To attend lodge he was obliged to travel approximately 150 miles and
in that day he probably made the trip on horseback. But to a man who had time and
again shown himself ever ready and willing to go on foot and out of his way to
relieve any person in distress that was nothing.
That Brother Carson practised true Masonic charity is evidenced by the following
story, which to my knowledge has never been published and which was obtained by
the writer from his niece, who, after the assassination of her father, Governor Bent,
was raised by Carson, and living in the household at the time of its happening. It is in
substance as follows:
Carson had learned that the Comanches had a slave, a white boy about twelve years
of age. He there-upon fitted out a pack outfit or train, hired a couple of natives and
furnished them with trinkets and other articles to trade and barter with the Indians,
with whom they were on friendly terms at the time. They went out and located the
Comanches and purchased the boy and brought him back. When he was brought in
he was hardly distinguishable from an Indian. Carson had him cleaned up and
provided with new clothes. He then tried to converse with him in English, Spanish
and French, all to no avail. He then called in a gentleman who spoke German. When
the lad heard his mother tongue, for he proved to be German, he began crying. He
was given to understand that he was among friends. He then gave his name, his
father's name and the place in Texas from whence he had been stolen. Carson then
fitted out another outfit and sent him home and restored him to his parents, bearing
the whole expense himself, the boy's people having been in poor circumstances.
At another time, two women, who had been captured in Mexico by the Comanches
and carried off as slaves, upon learning that Carson with a party was at the time in the
neighbourhood of the tribe, made their escape to him and he sent them back to their
people in Mexico, at his own expense.
Another incident, hitherto unpublished, and one that reveals his patriotism, was
related to me by the late Captain Smith H. Simpson, who knew Carson for fifteen
years prior to the latter's death. The Captain said that in the Spring of 1868, just after
Carson had returned from one of his official trips (he was Indian Agent at the time)
they were walking up the west side of the plaza in Taos. Carson said to Simpson,
"Do you see that flag up there?" pointing to the American flag floating over the
plaza. Simpson replied, "Yes." Carson then said, "Well I have kept that up since
'Forty Seven. I am not going to be here much longer. I want you to see that flag stays
up." He "passed over the great divide" about two months later, aged 58 years.
For contemporary comment on his life and character, we look to the first issue of The
Pueblo Chieftain, which said:-
"DEATH OF KIT CARSON. The melancholy intelligence reaches us that General
Kit Carson is no more. He died at his residence on the Las Animas on the 24th inst,
of disease of the heart. General Carson was a Kentuckian by birth, removed early in
life to the State of Missouri, and while yet a mere boy became a wanderer on the vast
plains of the then known regions of the West. From about the age of seventeen years
until fifty he lived the life of a hunter, trader and trapper. He early explored and
became familiar with the mountains and plains from the Missouri to the Pacific
ocean. During all these years of his wild life he was constantly exposed to every
hardship and danger; sometimes making his home with some tribe of the Indians and
assisting them in their wars against other tribes; sometimes employed as a trapper by
some mountain trader; sometimes trading on his own account between New Mexico
and California. His home was always the wilderness, and danger was his constant
companion. Unaided by the advantages of education or patronage, by the forces of
indomitable, energy and will, by chivalrous courage, by tireless labour and self
denial, he rose step by step, until his name had become as familiar to the American
People as a household word. He stood preeminent among the pathfinders and
founders of empire in the Great West, and his long career, ennobled by hardship and
danger, is unsullied by a record of littleness or meanness. He was nature's model of a
gentleman. Kindly of heart, tolerant to all men, good in virtues of disposition, rather
than great in qualities of mind, he has passed away - dying as through his life he had
lived - in peace and charity with all men, and leaving behind him a name and memory
to be cherished by his countrymen so long as modesty, valour, unobtrusive worth,
charity and true chivalry survive among men. Of his precise age we are not advised,
but judge he was very near sixty years of age. He leaves children of tender age to
mourn his loss."
Kit Carson had many fights with the Indians while on hunting and trapping
expeditions. Of his many deeds of valour we mention but one or two. One occurred
while with Fremont, when Carson was leading a party of six scouts as an advanced
guard in southern Oregon. The Klamath Indians had been giving trouble, even to
making a night attack and killing some of Fremont's men. The latter decided to
chastise the Indians. He therefore sent Carson on ahead to locate them. Carson and
his men came suddenly upon a Klamath village. Sending a runner back for the main
party, his party and the Indians each attacked simultaneously. When Fremont arrived
on the scene the village was in flames and such Indians as survived were in full flight.
We might mention another instance. When General Kearney was surrounded by the
Mexican forces in Southern California, Carson and Lieutenant Beale of the Navy
volunteered and made their way through the Mexican lines, reached the sea coast and
secured men and munitions for the relief of Kearney.
Carson was chief scout and guide of the Saguache campaign against the Utes, under
Colonels Fontleroy and St. Vrain, in which the Indians got a whipping that they never
About 1863 Carson was made Colonel of the First New Mexico Cavalry, and one of
his first military operations was against the Kiowas and Comanches, culminating in a
battle near the old adobe fort, formerly erected by Bent and St. Vrain on the Canadian
River in Texas. These Indians had made a great deal of trouble for years, but they
were cured in the fight at the "Adobe Walls," as the fight was called.
But Carson's greatest military achievement was his Navaho campaign. The writer has
talked with men who were on the ground during that campaign; and in his humble
opinion that achievement alone lifted General Carson to the front rank of American
Indian fighters. The Spaniards had waged a war aging the Navahos for two hundred
years. Mexico had continued that war, likewise the United States. But the Navahos
remained defiant and unsubdued. When the troops would concentrate they would
scatter, and when the troops scattered they would concentrate, and with their system
of signals and knowledge of the country they were invincible. Of that campaign we
would prefer to stand aside and let a contemporary speak. Colonel Jas. F. Meline in
"Two Thousand Miles on Horseback," in writing of the declaration of war by General
Carleton upon the Navahos, said:
"True to his promise, the war opened on the very day set by General Carleton, July
20, 1863. A regiment of New Mexicans, with more than a century of accumulated
wrong and oppression to avenge, were at once placed under the command of a man
who understood his Indian well - Kit Carson. These troops knew neither summer rest
nor winter quarters but pursued the Indian foe relentlessly month after month, night
and day, over mesas and deserts and rivers, under broiling suns and in rough winter
snows, killing and capturing them in their most chosen retreats, until finally, broken
and dispirited under a chastisement the like of which they never had dreamed of,
small bands began to come in voluntarily, then larger ones, and finally groups of
fifties and hundreds, nearly comprising the strength of the tribe. The prisoners, as
fast as received, were dispatched to the Bosque Redondo, and those who remained
sent out white flags in vain. Throughout 1864, 1865 and the present year, the war
went on under these conditions, and the result is that some eight thousand Navahos,
including a few Apaches, are now living peaceably at the Bosque, engaged in
agriculture and manufactures, four hundred miles from their old homes, and ninety
miles east of Rio Grande Settlement."
This cured the Navahos and they have been "good Indians" ever since. Throughout
his career Carson never failed to teach the Indians not only to fear but to trust him.
He was their friend in their hour of need and he spoke five Indian languages besides
Spanish and French. His last official act, so far as the writer has been able to
ascertain, was the making of a treaty with the Utes which was transmitted to Congress
March 18, 1868. A fitting ending for a man, who by his conduct had set a plumb line
in the wilderness, and set a level in the desert and applied the square to all his
dealings with his fellow men, who had given his life to win the West for the country
he loved. He was beloved of all who knew him and in enclosing this sketch we wish
again to quote from Colonel Meline:
"The pleasantest episode of my visit here has been the society of Kit Carson, with
whom I passed three days, I need hardly say delightfully. He is one of the few men I
ever met who can talk long hours to you of what he has seen, and yet say very little
about himself. He has to be drawn out. I had many questions to ask, and his answers
were all marked by great distinctness of memory, simplicity, candour, and a desire to
make some one else, rather than himself, the hero of his story."
Such was the manner of the man.
(1) Upham's "Life of Fremont," p. 279.
(2) Idem p. 230.
— o —
THE FAMOUS TESTIMONIAL TO ALBERT G. MACKEY
BY THE EDITOR
DURING the troublesome times of the Civil War Albert G. Mackey was confined to
his home city of Charleston, S. C., where for four years he gave his time, his energies
and his substance to the succour of his brethren, little heeding whether they belonged
to North or to South, though he himself was a Union man. Immediately after
Charleston, the "cradle of the rebellion," had passed once again into Federal control,
Dr. Mackey's brethren of New York City "moved by a common impulse of
admiration for the man, of ardent sympathy for the unyielding patriot, of fraternal
love for the zealous Mason, determined to invite him to visit them once more, and to
receive at their hands a substantial evidence of their sympathy." (I am quoting from a
very rare account of the Dr. Mackey Testimonial printed in 1865 by Macoy and
Sickels. This copy was signed by Mackey himself and inscribed to the then Grand
Master of New York, Clinton F. Paige.)
A call was issued to the Masons of New York City. They met on the evening of
March 15, 1865 and at that time adopted, among others, this resolution, that,
"Whereas, it has further come to our knowledge that by the vicissitudes of war, our
R.'. W.'. Brother has lost his property, and in his declining years been reduced to the
sharp necessity of beginning again the battle of life; therefore,
"Resolved, That as an earnest of our good will we solicit his acceptance of the
voluntary contributions of the brethren "
A public "Welcome and Testimonial" was held in the Academy of Music on Saturday
evening, May 20, 1865, M.'. W.'. Clinton F. Paige presiding. A number of
"distinguished artists," along with "Grafulla's Seventh Regiment Full Band," made the
The center of interest on the occasion was the gracious kindly gentleman from the
South in whose honour so large a throng was assembled. After the music had ceased,
and the Grand Master had pronounced a beautiful welcoming address, Dr. Mackey
delivered the speech, a part of which succeeds this brief narrative.
This speech, however impressive as it was then - and still is - did not so deeply stir
the auditors as the incident that followed, the account of which I transcribe from the
"Just as Mme. Salvotti had breathed the last intonation of her song, and before the
sounds of her voice had died away, R.'. W.'. Robert Macoy stepped forward and
presented Brother Mackey with a beautiful gold snuffbox, of which the following
history was given:
"It was stated that this box had before been presented to Brother Mackey by the
Masonic fraternity, as a token of gratitude for the many years of faithful servitude he
had rendered them. Shortly after the commencement of the war, however, Brother
Mackey was compelled to part with it in order to procure bread for his family. The
box then passed into the hands of a person who took it to Easton, Pa., and gave it to a
jeweller to have the inscription erased. This fact becoming known to Brother J. M.
Porter, Jr., Past Master of Easton Lodge No. 152, he, with other members of the
lodge, having by correspondence with New York become acquainted with its history,
purchased it, and sent it to New York to Brother Macoy, with the request that it
should in their name be returned to Brother Mackey, with a handsome little present
enclosed. The box has since been kept safely without the knowledge of Brother
Mackey, until it was presented to him last evening. In making the presentation,
Brother Macoy briefly explained the above facts, and closed by saying that the box,
though beautiful on the outside, had, also, a peculiar inside lining; he would not say
exactly what it was, but it looked green (backs).
"It is needless to say that Brother Mackey was taken by surprise at the reappearance
of his precious gift, the snuffbox. He expressed himself much gratified at becoming
again the possessor of it, and retired amid the applause of the audience."
It transpired that Dr. Mackey had literally bankrupted himself in order to give
assistance to his brethren, even to the extent of his personal belongings. A venerable
brother who was present at the Academy of Music tells me that those who were in
attendance left with the feeling that in this Testimonial it was already evident that
Masons would take the lead in healing over the breach between the two sections, and
that in his own attitude and spirit Dr. Mackey revealed that which so ennobled
Abraham Lincoln, - "Malice toward none, charity for all."
— o —
Freemasonry is the science of life, taught in a society of men by signs, symbols and
ceremonies, having as its basis a system of morality, and for its purposes and aim, the
perfection and happiness of the individual and the race. - George F. Moore
FREEMASONRY IN THE CIVIL WAR
BY BROTHER DR. ALBERT G. MACKEY
As explained in the preceding article, a public Testimonial was given to Brother
Mackey, author of Mackey's Encyclopedia, Mackey's History of Freemasonry, etc.,
on the night of May 20th, 1865. Space does not permit the reproduction of the whole
or the remarkable speech delivered by him at that time, but it is believed that many
brethren will be delighted to read that part which contains his stirring account of
Masonic relief during the soul-racking days of the Civil War.
AS A MASON, holding a not altogether obscure position in the Order, I have, in the
course of my life written and said much about its excellence and beauty. I know that
it teaches fraternal love. I know that it inculcates kindness to the destitute, and
sympathy for the sorrowing. I know its pretensions to be a science of morality and a
development in one direction of the religious sentiment. But until this war came upon
us, in all its horror of want and suffering, of demoniac hate and inhuman passion, I
did not know how successfully theory and practice could be mingled in the teachings
of the Order and the actions of the disciples. I did not know how surely and
steadfastly its rays of light could dispel the gloom of this dark night of our national
When the first struggles of the infant rebellion began to threaten the gigantic future of
ruin and desolation, which it subsequently too successfully achieved, all the other
social, moral and religious societies of the country preserved a deathlike silence. No
voice of warning, no voice of entreaty, no prayer or suggestion for forbearance came
from any section of the land, already upheaving with the throes of a fratricidal
conflict. The Church where peace on earth and good will toward men should have
been at all times, but then more especially, the constant theme, was dumb as the
grave. The dark funeral pall of war was closing around the land, and there was none
to raise its gathering clouds and let in one solitary ray of peace, or hope, or love.
Masonry alone, mindful of its divine mission on earth, spoke out with persuasive
tongue of exhortation, that men and brethren should abstain from this cruel conflict.
That it thus spoke is a noble incident of its history. And although its voice was then
unheeded, none shall henceforth, forever, rob it of the glory of the attempt.
Scarcely sixty days had elapsed after the first shot had been fired at Fort Sumpter,
when, from the National Capitol, the true-hearted Grand Master of the Templars of
the United States issued a memorable address to the knights of his command, who
were scattered over both sections of our discordant country, in which he "implored
each one, after humbly seeking strength and aid from on High, to exert all means at
his command to avert the dread calamity and prevent the shedding of fraternal blood."
Not a month had passed ere the officers of the Grand Lodge of Tenessee made a
similar invocation for peace; and in the tones of entreaty that ought to have been
heard, "as Masons, as members of a common brotherhood, as brethren bound together
by fraternal ties not to be broken save by the hand of death," they appealed for a
cessation of the unnatural strife.
And a few weeks later, the Grand Masters of Kentucky, of Ohio, and of Indiana,
united in a similar work of attempted reconciliation; and crying out from the very
depths of their hearts, "Is there no balm for the bleeding wounds of our nation? Is
there no hand to hold out the olive branch? No saviour to still the troubled waters?" -
they concluded their earnest appeal by inviting a Masonic convention, which should
recommend some plan to heal the wounds of the country. Had the acerbity of
political strife, and the cunning of political corruption which were then overbearing
the deluded people with their pressure, permitted the holding of such a convention,
who can tell what blessed results might have been brought forth from the communion
of men who had been taught the duty of mutual kindness and mutual forbearance at
the same sacred altar and in the same mystic language?
And then came with like counsels the gentle voice of Cyril Pearl from his far-off
home on the very borders of our land. He lived to see the culmination of the war
which he deprecated. Before its decline he was called from his earthly labours of
love. Masonry can illy spare such noble-hearted men.
And when at last the clouds of war had not only gathered all over the land, but had
burst forth in a storm of carnage; when there was no more hope of peace until the
discordant passions of men should be diluted with the flow of blood, the Grand
Master of South Carolina, whose heart, strongly beating with Union sympathies, has
long since been quelled in death, addressed an encyclical letter to his brethren, in
which he charged them in the name of our Supreme and Universal Master, "to suffer
not the disputes and broils of men to impair the harmony which has existed and will
exist throughout the fraternity." "Let us not," he said, in his own emphatic language,
"let us not hear among us that there is war; that strife and dissension prevail. As
Masons, it concerns us not."
And I rejoice in my heart that these teachings were not unheeded. If there was war
without, there was always peace within our lodges.
Will you bear with me while I say of my native jurisdiction, where I thi nk I have
some Masonic influence, that in South Carolina, reproached as I fear she justly is, as
birthplace, the benignant principles of Freemasonry were never for a moment
forgotten. In its capital city, the only place, I fear, on the whole continent where the
same deed of love was enacted, prisoners of war, who were Masons, were relieved on
their parole by the officer of their guard, himself a Mason, and carried from the prison
to the lodge room, to relieve the weariness of their captivity by witnessing and
participating in the secret services of the Order.
And I can solemnly aver that I never approached a Mason or lodge in Charleston,
with a petition for the relief of a destitute, suffering prisoner of war, without receiving
the kindest response and the most liberal donation.
Throughout the length and breadth of our land, at the North and the South, the East,
and the West, wherever there was the sin of strife, there, too, was the atoning peace of
Masonry. It went into the prison, and gave comfort to the captive. It went into the
hospital, and gave balm to the wounded. It went into the battlefield, and gave rescue
of life to the conquered.
Let none henceforth speak of its unknown mysteries, or contempt for its pretended
merits. Let its adversaries be silent before the magnitude of its achievements; and
when the history of this unnatural war is written, while all honour is bestowed upon
the hero and the patriot, let it not be forgotten, but let it rather be inscribed in
characters of living light, that when war was beginning to whet its beak - while other
associations were indifferent and dumb - while the churches themselves gave no sign
of Christian life, Masonry done sought to avert the impending evil; and when the full
tide of conflict had rolled in upon our shores, and blood was soaked into the ground,
Masonry again came forth, a ministering angel, to clothe in some measure the stain of
our nation's fratricidal contest with a ray of cheering light, and to give to the black
cloud of war a silver lining.
— o —
A ROMAN CATHOLIC EDITOR OPPOSES ROMAN CATHOLIC SECRET
Why Roman Catholics should be so opposed to Freemasonry because it is a secret
society while their own church fosters, and has in times past fostered, some of the most
powerful secret societies that have ever existed has long been a standing puzzle to
Masons who believe that what is sauce for the goose should also be sauce for the
gander. But Masons are not the only ones to observe this curious inconsistency. Here is
a letter from a Roman Catholic editor that was published in The Fortnightly Review,
September 1st, 1922, page 327. It is sufficiently explicit and stands in no need of
interpretation. The Fortnightly Review is a Roman Catholic journal, published on the
1st and 16th of every month, 5851 Etzel Avenue, St. Louis, Mo. It is edited by Arthur
Preuss, author of a well known "book" on Freemasonry.
"I just finished reading your fine article 'Combating Secret Societies' (F.R., No. 16, p.
301 sq.). While reading it, and fully agreeing with Bishop Wehrle, I wondered what
should be said about the secret societies within the Church or 'in the shadow of the
"Thirty years ago, as a printer, I became interested in secret societies, Every once in a
while some mysterious stuff came along 'a printers handled the cuts of various
emblems, turned out stationery, letters, etc., and began to study the material. This will
explain why I am able today to tell at first glance to what lodge a man belongs if he
wears an emblem. When I went into business for myself, I was told of the many
advantages of secret orders, and I joined one. My interest grew, I became very active
and was elected to various offices, excepting the 'paid' offices, but I have had my fill of
'honor.' Once I discussed the question of life insurance and fraternal orders with a
Lutheran pastor, whom I respected for the stand he took against all the mummery,
tomfoolery and rot. This pastor was well read on the subject and gave me a ritual of a
certain secret society. Reading it I found that it was similar, yes, in some parts and
respects identical with the ritual which 'we' used. After that I read various exposes, and
I have reasons to believe that the latter are correct. Later I read your book on
Freemasonry. My interest grew, and I obtained some 'real rituals.' I am in a position
now to state that all secret societies are fashioned alike. 'We' met in an I.O.O.F. Hall at
one time for a monster initiation, and let me assure you that it was not necessary to shift
much scenery to adapt the hall for our 'ceremonies.' 'We' even left the altar where it
stood, but called it the 'Center Pedestal.'
" 'We' have the 'stations,' the 'wicket,' the 'pass-word,' the 'grip,' the sign and salute, the
'gown and cap,' the 'mysteries,' all the awe-inspiring things and all the tommyrot of the
lodge room with a few religious features to make it a little different.
"Of course, 'we' go to communion in a body to remain in good standing.
"As long as 'we' act thus and indulge in the mummery and humbug which is being
condemned by our bishops here and there, results cannot be expected. What we need,
and need badly, is a house-cleaning that begins right at home.
"I am not writing this for publication, and cannot permit my name to be printed in
connection with it. I am simply stating facts which cannot be overlooked, or disputed
for that matter. It has gone too far, and, 1 believe that it is beyond remedy. When it is
borne in mind that the Wisconsin Staatsverband (D.R.K.C.V.) recently filled a long-felt
want by adopting an 'Einfuhrungs-Modus' with a very strong leaning to secrecy, it
becomes plain that the garden is full of weeds.
"Worst of all: If the Church tolerates secret societies within and 'in her shadow,'
Catholics naturally must conclude that they are not so bad after all. Swimming against
the stream, as both of us do, we have the sensation of being living fish, but it is folly to
think that we are making any headway.
"I could give you a 'lot of dope,' but what's the use? Constant dripping may hollow a
stone, but you and I will be dead and buried a long time before the stone will show any
marks." A Catholic Fellow Editor.
— o —
GOTHIC CATHEDRALS USED AS CIVIC BUILDINGS
The Gothic cathedrals were almost as much civic buildings as they were churches, and
in the sense that they embodied the pride, the ambition, and the rivalries of the cities,
this was eminently the case. But they were also actually used for town meetings, for
public festivals, and for theatrical exhibitions - the "miracle plays" and "passion plays,"
which have survived in one famous instance at Oberammergau. In the Middle Ages the
church and the cathedral were always open, like the Roman Catholic churches of our
own day. Here the poor man was the equal of the rich. The beggar and his lord met on
terms of equality in the liberty of using the building and in the theory of its religious
teachings. There were no pews for favored owners. The cathedral was the palace of the
poor, and its entire space outside the sanctuary was open to their daily visits and
sojourn at will, without disturbance.
The cathedral was the museum of art; a museum made, not to display the ostentation of
the rich or the luxury of his life, but to teach by pictures and reliefs the history of the
world as then known and comprehended by the traditions of the church, and the lessons
of faith and of sacrifice. Here were, moreover, the actual memorials and relics of past
ages; for here was the treasury not only of the art of the present but also of the art of the
past. Finally, the cathedral was the sanctuary of the famous and illustrious dead. Their
tombs were its decoration and its pride.
- W.H. Goodyear.
— o —
MEMORIALS TO GREAT MEN WHO WERE MASONS - GENERAL JOSEPH
BY BRO. GEO. W. BAIRD, P.G.M., DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA
JOSEPH WARREN was Grand Master of Massachusetts. There is a handsome
memorial to him in Roxbury of that state, where he was buried.
General Warren was bom in Roxbury in 1741, and he was killed at the Battle of
Bunker Hill in 1775. Like so many of our early patriots he was a physician before he
became a soldier. He was graduated from Harvard University and practiced medicine
His courageous and fiery patriotism is revealed by the fact that when Mr. Samuel
Adams declined to deliver the address on the second anniversary of the "Boston
Massacre," March 5, 1772, Dr. Warren himself delivered it, though he knew the act
was fraught with great danger to himself.
Dr. Warren was a delegate to the convention at Suffolk, which took measures to
prevent Governor Gage from fortifying the south entrance to Boston. He was a delegate
to the Massachusetts Congress in 1774, and was elected president of that body. It is
said that "to his energy was in great measure due the successful result of the battle of
Lexington." In 1775 he received his commission as Major General and took part
shortly afterwards in the Battle of Bunker Hill, with which his name will ever be
connected in the loving annals of this nation.
There is a story told of him to the effect that he was warned by Elbridge Gerry against
hazard in exposing his person, to which General Warren exclaimed: "I know that I may
fall, but where is the man who does not think it glorious and delightful to die for his
country ! " Another story relates that a British officer called to him by name to warn
him of his risks and even ordered his men to cease firing. Dr. Warren was shot in the
head and died instantly. If it be true that the British officer did call to him in this
manner we should feel remiss were we to pass so gallant an act without praise.
General Warren devoted years to the Craft and occupies a conspicuous place in the
history of the early Masonry of the United States. He was a Mason in deed as well as in
word, and such men always become the idol of the brethren. Lodges have been named
for General Warren in almost every state in the Union. The Grand Secretary of New
York, Brother Kenworthy, has made the excellent suggestion that the Craft establish
the custom of naming new lodges after these great patriots.
Perhaps I can do no more thorough justice to the story of the Masonic career of General
Warren than by incorporating here an account of him published in the Grand Lodge
Proceedings of Massachusetts, June 14, 1916, wherein we may read:
"Joseph Warren was bom in Roxbury, Mass., June 11, 1741. He graduated at Harvard
College in 1759. During 1760 he was employed as a teacher in a public school in
Roxbury and in the following year commenced the study of medicine under Doctor
Lloyd, an eminent physician of that day. He began practice in 1763 and is said to have
distinguished himself at once. In 1764 the smallpox prevailed extensively in Boston
and he was very successful in treating it. About this time he began to take an active part
in political affairs, and his letters to public men and his newspaper essays soon
attracted the attention even of the government. They were remarkable for clearness of
thought, terseness of statement, and cogency of argument. In 1774 he was chosen to
represent the town of Boston in the Provincial Congress and in the following year was
elected President of that body. Here he manifested extraordinary powers of mind and a
peculiar fitness for the guidance and government of men in times of difficulty and
"The Congress was then sitting at Watertown and upon its daily adjournment he
hastened to the military camp there to participate with the common soldiers in the
exercise and drills and to encourage and animate them by exhortation and example.
The Provincial Congress offered him the appointment of Surgeon General, but he
declined it and accepted a Commission as Major General, dated only three days before
the Battle of Bunker Hill.
"On the night of the 16th of June, 1775, he presided at the meeting of the Colonial
Congress which continued in session a great part of the night in Watertown. Early in
the morning of June 1 7th he visited a patient in Dedham and left her saying that he
must go to Charlestown to get a shot at the British and would return to her in season for
her confinement which was almost hourly expected. He arrived at Bunker Hill only a
few moments before the first attack of the British troops. There he refused to take
command when offered it by Putnam and Prescott, seized a musket, and fought as a
private. His reluctance to obey the order to retreat resulted in his death as he was only a
few rods from the redoubt when the British obtained full possession and he; was
instantly killed by a bullet in the head. He was buried in a shallow grave on the field.
"Immediately after the evacuation of Boston his Masonic brethren determined to go in
search of the body. They repaired to the spot indicated by an eye-witness of his death.
It was at the brow of a hill, and near the head of the grave was an acacia tree. Upon the
removal of the earth which appeared to have been recently disturbed they found the
body of their Grand Master. This was on the 6th of April, 1776. They carefully
conveyed the body to the State House in Boston, and on the 8th of the same month an
oration was delivered over his remains by Perez Morton who was at the time Grand
Marshal of the Grand Lodge. After the funeral ceremonies the remains were deposited
in a tomb in the Granary Burying Ground where they remained for nearly fifty years. In
1825 his remains were found, identified, deposited in a box of hardwood, designated by
a silver plate, and placed in the Warren Tomb under St. Paul's Church, Boston. A
number of years later they were again removed and found their final resting place in
Forest Hills Cemetery.
"King Solomon's Lodge (then of Charlestown, now of Somerville), in December, 1794,
erected and dedicated a monument to his memory in the shape of a Tuscan pillar
eighteen feet high, resting upon a platform eight feet in height, eight feet square, and
fenced about to Protect it from injury. On the top of the pillar was placed a gilt urn with
the initials and age of General Warren enclosed within the square and compasses. The
dedicatory services and procession were elaborate. The lodge kept the monument in
repair until March 8, 1825, when they voted to present the land and monument to the
Bunker Hill Monument Association upon condition that there should be placed within
the walls of the monument the Association was about to erect a suitable memorial of
the ancient pillar in order to perpetuate that early patriotic act of the Masonic
Fraternity. In fulfillment of that condition King Solomon's Lodge on June 24, 1845,
placed within Bunker Hill Monument an exact model in marble of the original
monument. The public ceremonies were conducted by the Grand Lodge, including
many distinguished brethren from other jurisdictions. An interesting feature of the
occasion was the presentation of the working tools to the Grand Master, Augustus
Peabody, by Past Grand Mast John Soley, who had himself fifty years before dedicated
the first monument. The comer stone of the present monument was laid with Mason
ceremonies on the fiftieth anniversary of the battle under the direction of Grand Master
John Abbot, assisted by our illustrious Brother Lafayette. The completion of the
monument was celebrated on the seventeenth of June, 1843, the Masonic portion of the
procession being under the direction of King Solomon's Lodge.
"On that occasion Past Grand Master Benjamin Russell, a soldier of the Revolution,
wore the Masonic Apron of General Warren. On June 17, 1857, Most Worshipful John
T. Heard, Grand Master, assisted by the Grand Officers and two thousand brethren,
inaugurated a statue of General Warren in the presence of about five thousand persons.
"Joseph Warren was initated in St. Andrew's Lodge of Boston on September 30, 1761.
He was passed on November 2d, but there is no record as to the date of his raising.
On November 14, 1765, the lodge voted unanimously that Doctor Joseph Warren be
re-admitted a member of the lodge. He was elected Master in 1769. In December of
that year he received from the Earl of Dalhousie, Grand Master of Masons in
Scotland, a Commission bearing date May 30, 1769, appointing him Grand Master of
Masons in Boston and within one hundred miles of the same. In 1773 he received
another Commission dated March 3, 1772, issued by the Earl of Dumfries, then
Grand Master of Scotland, extending his jurisdiction over the Continent of America.
He was installed under each of these Commissions on the 27th
BUNKER HILL MONUMENT
"Erected A. D. MDCCXCIV., by King Solomon's Lodge of Freemasons, constituted
at Charlestown, 1783, in memory of Major General Joseph Warren and his
Associates, who were slain on this memorable spot, June 17, 1775.
None but they who set a just value upon the blessings of Liberty are worthy to enjoy
her. In vain we toiled: in vain we fought: we bled in vain, if you, our offspring, want
valor to repel the assaults of her invaders!”
Charlestown Settled 1628: Burnt 1775; Rebuilt 1776. The closed land given by Hon.
"This is an exact model of the first monument erected on Bunker Hill, which, with the
land on which it stood, was given A.D. 1825 by King Solomon's Lodge, of this town,
to the Bunker Hill Monument Association, that they might erect upon its site a more
imposing structure. The Association, in fulfilment of a pledge at that time given, have
allowed, in their imperishable obelisk, this model to be inserted, with appropriate
ceremonies, by King Solomon's Lodge, June 24th, A. D. 1845."
of December of the respective years. Grand Master Warren presided over all the forty
meetings of the Grand Lodge held previous to his death, save four. On one of the
occasions when he was absent, namely, June 3, 1774, the record recites that the Grand
Lodge adjourned by reason of the few Grand Officers present, they being engaged on
consequential public business. He was present, however, at the adjourned meeting on
the 7th of that month.
"Joseph Warren, the first man of distinction to lay down his life in the cause of
American liberty, was not only young and handsome, but also able, energetic, patriotic,
active and brave. Notwithstanding his youth he had the responsibilities and care of a
young family, the anxieties and labors of the large practice of a popular physician, and
the demands of an extensive correspondence both at home and abroad, personal as well
as political. With all this he was a constant attendant upon the meetings of the
Committee of Correspondence, the Committee of Safety, the meetings of the town, of
the Sons of Liberty, and other caucuses. He was a prolific writer. He was assiduous in
the exercise of his Masonic duties to such an extent that Masonry even in those
troublous days flourished and prospered under his administration."
When Daniel Webster delivered his masterly address at the dedication of Bunker Hill
monument, he made no mention of the monument it displaced, which seems to have
been largely forgotten. I am indebted to Brother C.F. Willard of San Diego, California,
for the reference, and to the Grand Secretary of Massachusetts (Brother Frederick W.
Hamilton) for the picture herewith produced. It tells the whole story, and any attempt to
add to its grandeur would be like an effort to paint the lily. But how so great and
important an illustration could be buried so long it is hard to understand. The name of
King Solomon's Lodge should be emblazoned in letters of gold for this grand act; and,
be it remembered, that it must have been erected at no small sacrifice in that day when
money was so scarce.
This Masonic monument was removed to make place for a larger one, at public
expense, thus removing this evidence that the great Warren was a Mason, though his
memorial at Roxbury shows that he was.
I conclude with a poem that gives excellent expression to the spirit of Warren. My copy
is signed by the name "Pierponf can some reader tell us something about this
Revolutionary bard? was he the John Pierpont who was bom in 1785 and died in 1866,
and who divided his attention equally between themes patriotic and religious ?
WARREN'S ADDRESS AT BUNKER HILL
Stand! the ground's your own, my braves!
Will ye give it up to slaves?
Will ye look for greener graves?
Hope ye mercy still?
What's the mercy despots feel?
Hear it in that battle peal!
Hear it on yon bristling steel!
Ask it - ye who will.
Fear ye foes who kill for hire?
Will ye to your homes retire?
Look behind you! they're afire!
And, before you, see -
Who have done it! - from the vale
On they come! - and will ye quail? -
Leaden rain and iron hail
Let their welcome be!
In the God of battles trust!
Die we may, - and die we must; -
But, oh! where can dust to dust
Be consigned so well.
As where heaven its dews shall shed
On the martyred patriot's bed,
And the rocks shall raise their head,
Of his deeds to tell!
— o —
THE AWFUL FETISH OF FEEDING
Miscellanea Latomorum, Vol. VII, No. 3, page 47, prints a communication that is not
without point on this side of the water. Says the editor, Brother Lionel Vibert: "I
advisedly print the following outpourings without ally indications of their origin, but I
can assure my readers that they come from an eminent source." The item is as follows:
"I was very pleased to see your remarks on page 135 of volume VI. Royal Cumberland
is very much to be congratulated that this is the class of lodge that it is a pleasure to
belong to. This awful fetish of feeding that now exists is depressing. On the last two
occasions I have been to Chapters (Royal Arch, not in London) my whole evening was
spoilt by hustling the ceremony to get to dinner. In one case I was in the second chair
and a Provincial Grand Lodge Officer sitting behind who was paying an official visit
asked me to get the Z to cut out the lectures and then to take the ballot for the officers
in one lot. The other occasion was an installation - only two of the principals were
fully installed as the third was already an H. A ceremony of exaltation was to follow
but it was actually cut out because they were afraid the soup would be cold! These two
Chapters were in different Provinces, but such cases are by no means uncommon.
Masonry of this sort is useless. The last time I was in a Mark lodge almost the same
sort of thing was done, the Master made very neat little addresses to his new officers,
and afterwards a visiting Provincial Grand Lodge Officer groused about it because it
made us late for dinner. This sort of thing is a very bad example to the younger
"There is another habit which very much wants stopping, and that is making a
Masonic sign when toasting a brother across the table; it seems to be getting much
more common than it was and is dangerous when there are so mary outside waiters
— o —
TO ALBERT G. MACKEY
BY BRO. H.L. HAYWOOD, IOWA
Scholar Mason, gentle, kindly,
How securely has thy name,
How serenely has thy fame
Braved the years that else so blindly
Have undone so much we prize!
Still thy spirit hovers near us,
Now to guide and now to cheer us,
Never harsh and always wise.
In what Lodge, beyond our ken
Hast thou found a Master's place?
Dost thou now behold the Face
Of the Master of all men?
May He grant to thee the wage
Of a Craftsman and a Sage.
— o —
THE TEACHINGS OF MASONRY
BYBRO. H.L. HAYWOOD
The following paper is one of a series of articles on "Philosophical Masonry," or "The
Teachings of Masonry," by Brother Haywood, to be used for reading and discussion in
lodges and study clubs. From the questions following each section of the paper the
study club leader should select such as he may desire to use in bringing out particular
points for discussion. To go into a lengthy discussion on each individual question
presented might possibly consume more time than the lodge or study club may be able
to devote to the study club meeting.
In conducting the study club meetings the leader should endeavor to hold the
discussions closely to the text of the paper and not permit the members to speak too
long at one time or to stray onto another subject. Whenever it becomes evident that the
discussion is turning from the original subject the leader should request the members to
make notes of the particular points or phases of the matter they may wish to discuss or
inquire into and bring them up after the last section of the paper is disposed of.
The meetings should be closed with a "Question Box" period, when such questions as
may have come up during the meeting and laid over until this time should be entered
into and discussed. Should any questions arise that cannot be answered by the study
club leader or some other brother present, these questions may be submitted to us and
we will endeavor to answer them for you in time for your next meeting.
Supplemental references on the subjects treated in this paper will be found at the end of
PART XVI - ENDLESS LIFE
"Tis true; 'tis certain; man though dead retains
Part of himself; the immortal mind remains."
THESE WORDS, written by Homer 3,000 years ago, remind us how that ages before
the ferment of modem thought and all the crusades of our modem religions, men
believed in immortality as we do now. If one were to push himself behind Homer
into an age long anterior to his, and as ancient to him as his is to us, one would and
men cherishing the same hope. Imhotep, the father of architecture in stone, builder to
the Egyptian King Zoser, lived 5,000 years ago, but for all that he believed in
immortality as did Homer. And so with those to whom Imhotep looked back as to
those grown ancient to him; and also with them in their turn; and so on to the
beginning of things when the first half- wild hunter paused long enough in his search
of meat to gaze wistfully across lovely valleys, where floating gossamers reminded
him how frail and how fleeting is human life.
It is useless to try to prove by logic or by demonstration the immortality of man. We
believe it, there is an end of it! And we do not believe it because we have proved it,
but we try to prove it because we already believe it. It is a hope, a kind of inward
certainty which finds its support not in this fact or in that, but in the cast and colour of
life as a whole. It rises up into our minds like an exaltation from all our thoughts, all
our experiences, all our dreams, as the odour that drifts across a summer field distills
from numberless unnoted plants. We are never so puzzled as when we are challenged
to give a reasoned proof of this hope: and we are never so unreasonable as when we
cease to believe it. Men everywhere and always have believed it not because priests
have taught them or because scientists have found out the secret of it, but because life
itself has taught them, and it is something that the universe itself is always whispering
to them. The priests and the churches have not created the belief: it is the belief that
has made the priests and churches, and no amount of ignorance, baseness, or
superstition appears able to blot out that great hope. The cannibals cling to it, and we
ourselves though we sleep in a gutter, hear it announced within that whispering
gallery which we call the soul.
"Though inland far we be,
Our souls have sight of that immortal sea
Which brought us hither."
How long have men believed in immortality? Who was Homer? Imhotep? Why do
you believe in immortality? How would you set about to prove it? How do we know
that men have always believed it?
It is impossible to form any mental picture of the future life. No two religions
describe it in the same way, and some of them, ancient Buddhism, for example, have
refused to describe it at all. Our modem spiritists who follow in the train of Sir
Oliver Lodge, Conan Doyle, Camile Flammarion and their school, believe themselves
to have received authentic news from the Beyond but unfortunately they have never
been able to agree as to the nature of things in that unknown realm. It appears that
such descriptions as are given through the mediums, ouija boards and such other
occult means of communication usually conform in a general way to the
preconceptions of the spiritists themselves. The Eskimo spiritist is told that heaven is
a beautiful place full of icebergs and polar bears; the American Indian leams that it is
a happy hunting ground; the Chinese spiritist - spiritism has been developed in China
to a degree of respectability and perfection never attained elsewhere - is informed that
heaven is a gloried China organized strictly in accord with the principles of ancestor
worship. All this would indicate that if bona fide communications ever do penetrate
the veil the conditions are such as to preclude the transmission of accurate or definite
information, so that spiritists themselves are in like case with the rest of us who find
that eye hath not seen nor ear heard nor hath it entered into the mind of man to
conceive what the future life is like.
Nevertheless it is difficult to cherish even the thinnest hope of a continued life
without trying to fashion some sort of conception of it, because the mind cannot
otherwise handle the idea at all. Because we hold immortality as a belief we are
compelled to think it as a thought, and it is this psychological necessity, perhaps, that
has led men in every country and in all ages to make for themselves some picture of
heaven. One should not try to quarrel with this, because one cannot do so
successfully: man is so made that he must behave in this manner, and that is an end of
But it is for this reason, 1 believe, that we should be all the more careful that our
thinking about the future life be strictly reasonable. If our nature compels us to think
out some conception of immortality, that same nature similarly compels us to fashion
a conception that won't insult the intelligence or fly in the face of known facts. It is
necessary to be reasonable while we reason about Eternal Life. It seems to me - and I
speak here only for myself - that this principle in itself is one of the teachings of
Freemasonry concerning this subject. Our Fraternity leaves it to each individual to
fashion his own conceptions of the Beyond but at the same time, and by all the arts at
its command, persuades its votaries ever to remain in the Light, to seek more Light,
and to fear to walk farther than the Light can lead them: and this Light itself is, of
course, nothing other than reason, and knowledge, and right thinking. When the
subject passes beyond into the darkness of the unknowable it is better to cease
pursuing it further, lest we fall into superstition. It is better to remain agnostic about
what the future life is like than to hold fast to unreason.
How do you picture the future life in your own mind? What is spiritism? Name a few
leading spiritists now living. Do spiritists agree among themselves as to the future
life? Give an example of some conception of the future life that is contradicted by
facts as we know them, and that is unreasonable. Why should we try to make our
picture of the future life as reasonable as possible?
It is both safe and wise to hold fast to the principle that all reality is bound up together
into a great unity - for the which reason we call it a Universe - and that one part of
this system does not contradict or give the lie to any other part. There is no good
reason to suppose that death makes any profound change in the scheme of things.
Death is a part of the Universe and always has been and, it may possibly prove,
always will be. It is reasonable to suppose that the Universe will be the same after we
are dead as it was before, and that therefore the "future life," as we call it (it is no
longer "future" to those now living it) will in all essentials be of a piece with this
present life. Why should we expect marvels, wonders, and impossibilities there when
such things are not found here? What right have we to suppose that the experience of
death will change our world out of all recognition, and transform ourselves into
beings utterly different from what we are?
"What is human is immortal," said Bulwer-Lytton. Why is not the reverse also true?
"What is immortal is human." We are here in closest relation to an earth, out of the
surface of which we labour to wrest our bread each and every one of us is the member
of one race - the human - and of some one grand division thereof, in consequence of
which we differ greatly in colour, language, appearance, and a hundred other things.
The race as a whole is equally divided between two sexes, the members of which are
so unlike each other in many important respects as to cause one to believe that sexual
differences extend into the inmost recesses of human nature, and are not to be put on
or off by any possible change. We are each one organized in a physical body, and it is
ceaselessly necessary for us to work, to strive, to endure, to eat and sleep, and to
suffer. It may be that all these things will be carried over into whatever life, or lives,
may be waiting for us beyond. They are neither superficial nor accidental and are so
woven into the general scheme of things that it is difficult to understand how human
life could know itself after death with all such things omitted.
In spite of one's self such a discussion leads into theology, the most irritating of all
subjects, and the least appropriate to these pages. In a field where no landmarks are
marked out for us we are necessarily forced to fall back on private opinion, a thing I
have done throughout this paper, and with the most cordial invitation to the reader to
disagree if he is so disposed. I have no interest as a Mason in theological beliefs
concerning the future life save to secure for ourselves a principle that will guarantee
for us the full protection of the present life and all its values. It may be said that what
a man believes about the future is his own private affair and should be respected as
such. This is very true as long as the man's beliefs about the life to come do not
seriously interfere with the life that now is, a thing that often happens. If my beliefs
cause me to be illiberal or harsh, or unkind, or if they are such as to destroy my
happiness, then my beliefs become matters of concern to my fellows, and they have a
right to challenge me thereon. It is true, as I remarked above, that Freemasonry
leaves the fashioning of this religious belief to the individual, nevertheless the
Fraternity's spirit and teachings are distinctly opposed to beliefs that lead a man into
unbrotherly behaviour or unmasonic conduct. What Masonry has to teach concerning
immortality is necessarily of a piece with its other teachings. If democracy, equality,
charity, brotherly love, truth, kindliness, and honourable labour are good things now
they cannot cease to be good things in the life to come. If such things are of God in
this life it is hardly possible that they will cease to be divine in the next life.
If a man were to ask me point-blank, "what, in so many words, does Freemasonry
teach about the endless life?" I should be hard put to make a reply "Freemasonry does
not teach anything about it after the manner of an old-fashioned church catechism, but
all its rites and ceremonies, its spirit and its laws are filled with immortality as the sky
is suffused with light. Immortality is the motif of the Masonic symphony.
There is one word to be said in addition. In the great drama of the Third Degree there
are things done and said that give one a new and enlarged conception of everlasting
life. The initiate has it brought home to him that if there are some things which abide
for ever, so that they are undestroyed by all the deaths that are, it is possible to search
out such things now, and to mould his life about them, and give them the place of
control at the center of the heart, so that one can live the eternal life in the midst of
time. This is not easily gained, as many a man has learned to his cost: there are
ruffians at the gates, lions in the path, and often it will seem to one who seeks this
Royal Secret that his days are become a succession of deaths.
"He who flagged not in the earthly strife,
From strength to strength advancing - only he
His soul well-knit, and all his battles won,
Mounts, and that hardly, to eternal life."
What do we mean by saying that we live in a universe? What is your theory about the
part death plays in the life of man? What are the things in human nature least liable to
change after death? What is meant by theology? What kind of beliefs about the future
life cause men to be harsh and unkind? What has Masonry to teach concerning
immortality? What is the meaning of the drama of the Third Degree? In what way
does the Third Degree teach eternal life?
Vol. I (1915) - Immortality - The Circle, p. 133; After Death Shall We Live
Again? P. 300; Realization of the Truth, p. 21 1.
Vol. II (1916) - Reflections on the Philosophy of Albert Pike, p. 9; The Spirit
of Man, P. 187; The Three Grips, P. 30; The Third Degree, p. 126;
Toleration, p. 265.
Vol. Ill (1917) - The Landmarks, p. 21 1; The Feet of Time, p.25; Life After
Death, p. 123.
Vol. IV (1918) - Where the Rainbow Never Fades, p. 162; The Ancient
Mysteries p. 223; Symbolism of the Three Degrees, p. 291.
Vol. V (1919) - Studies in Blue Lodge Symbolism, p. 136; Eleusinian
Mysteries, p 240; The Plan of Freemasonry p. 266; Immortality, p. 145.
Vol. VI (1920) - Psychical Research, p. 918; Eternal Life, October C.C.B. p.
3; Freemasonry Among the American Indians, p. 295.
Vol. VII (1921) - The Immortality of the Soul, p. 50.
Vol. VIII (1922) - Death, the Liberator, p. 1 1; The Future Life, p. 126.
Mackey's Encyclopedia-(Revised Edition):
Buddhism, p. 122. See also related topics under Aranyaka, p. 74; Aryan,
p. 80; Mahabharata, Mahadeva, Mahakasyapa, p. 460; Pitaka, p. 569;
Puranas, p. 601, Ramayana, p. 607; Sakti, p. 661, Sastra and Sat B'hai, p.
664; Shaster, p. 685; Shesha, p. 686; Sruti, p. 710; Upadevas, Upanishad,
p. 818; Vedanga, Vedas, p. 824; Zenana, Zennaar, p. 878.
Egyptian Hieroglyphs, p. 231; Egyptian Mysteries, pp. 232-234; Immortality
of the Soul, p. 347; Master Mason or Third Degree, p. 474; Religion of
Masonry, pp. 617-619; Speculative Masonry, p. 704; Spiritualizing, p. 706;
Spiritual Lodge, p. 706; Sublime, p. 732.
— o —
OUR STUDY CLUB PLAN
Our Masonic Study Club Course, of which the foregoing paper by Brother Haywood is
a part, was begun in THE BUILDER early in 1917. Previous to the beginning of the
present series on "Philosophical Masonry," or "The Teachings of Masonry," as we have
titled it, were published some forty-three papers covering in detail "Ceremonial
Masonry" and "Symbolical Masonry" under the following several divisions: "The
Work of a Lodge," "The Lodge and the Candidate," "Lirst Steps," "Second Steps," and
"Third Steps." A complete set of these papers up to January 1st, 1922, are obtainable in
the bound volumes of THE BUILDER for 1917, 1918, 1919, 1920 and 1921.
hollowing is an outline of the subjects covered by the current series of study club
papers by Brother Haywood:
THE TEACHINGS OF MASONRY
1 . - General Introduction.
2. - The Masonic Conception of Human Nature.
3. - The Idea of Truth in Freemasonry.
4. - The Masonic Conception of Education.
5. - Ritualism and Symbolism.
6. - Initiation and Secrecy.
7. - Masonic Ethics.
8. - Equality.
9. - Liberty.
10. - Democracy.
11.- Masonry and Industry.
12. - The Brotherhood of Man.
13. - Freemasonry and Religion.
14. - Universality
15. - The Fatherhood of God.
16. - Endless Life.
17. - Brotherly Aid.
18. - Schools of Masonic Philosophy.
This systematic course of Masonic study has been taken up and carried out in monthly
and semi-monthly meetings of lodges and study clubs all over the United States and
Canada, and in several instances in lodges overseas.
The course of study has for its foundation two sources of Masonic information, THE
BUILDER and Mackey's Encyclopedia.
HOW TO ORGANIZE AND CONDUCT STUDY CLUB MEETINGS
Study clubs may be organized separate from the lodge, or as a part of the work of the
lodge. In the latter case the lodge should select a committee, preferably of three "live"
members who shall have charge of the study club meetings. The study club meetings
should be held at least once a month (excepting during July and August, when the
study club papers are discontinued in THE BUILDER), either at a special
communication of the lodge called for the purpose, or at a regular communication at
which no business (except the lodge routine) should be transacted, all possible time to
be devoted to study club purposes.
After the lodge has been opened and all routine business disposed of, the Master should
turn the lodge over to the chairman of the study club committee. The committee should
be fully prepared in advance on the subject to be discussed at the meeting. All members
to whom references for supplemental papers have been assigned should be prepared
with their material, and should also have a comprehensive grasp of Brother Haywood's
paper by a previous reading and study of it.
PROGRAM FOR STUDY CLUB MEETINGS
1. Reading of any supplemental papers on the subject for the evening which may have
been prepared by brethren assigned such duties by the chairman of the study club
2. Reading of the first section of Brother Haywood's paper.
3. Discussion of this section, using the questions following this section to bring out
points for discussion.
4. The subsequent sections of the paper should then be taken up and disposed of in the
5. Question Box. Invite questions on any subject in Masonry, from any and all brethren
present. Let the brethren understand that these meetings are for their particular benefit
and enlightenment and get them into the habit of asking all the questions they may be
able to think of. If at the time these questions are propounded no one can answer them,
send them in to us and we will endeavor to supply answers to them in time for your
next study club meetmg.
The foregoing information should enable study club committees to conduct their
meetings without difficulty. However, if we can be of assistance to such committees, or
any individual member of lodges and study clubs at any time such brethren are invited
to feel free to communicate with us.
THE BLUE LODGE HAS FIRST LIEN ON A MASON
ONCE A MAN has begun to take an active part in the activities of the Higher Degrees
(as they have come to be called) it is natural for him to become engrossed in them at
the expense of his Blue Lodge duties, and that because those degrees offer so much
greater variety. Instead of three degrees these other bodies, along with their auxiliaries,
offer a half hundred or so, and instead of one group of men there are several, all of
which makes for sustained interest as against the comparative monotony of Blue Lodge
The many brethren who succumb to this appeal are not to be too roughly scolded
because they but follow the lead of nature. Nevertheless, and even so, they should all
stop, look, and listen. Not one "higher" grade can ever rise above the level of the Craft
lodge, which is fons et origina for the whole Masonic system. As the Blue Lodge goes
so goes Masonry. If the Blue Lodge sinks into control by the least competent groups
how much better off will the other bodies be in the course of time? The whole York
Rite and Scottish Rite systems are so utterly dependent on the health and strength of
Craft Masonry that no man can be a friend to them who is not loyal to his Blue Lodge,
so that the more zealous a man is for the prosperity of any of the additional grades the
more active should he be in the work of the three degrees. The Blue Lodge has in the
nature of things first lien on a Mason's activities.
It is of interest in this connection to read a word written in the field and with no thought
of a literary public. In a report to his Grand Master, Brother H.E. Austin, a Deputy
District Grand Master of North Carolina, gave expression to some sterling good sense:
"Our Masons who have the capacity, the initiative, the personality, are not attending the
Blue Lodge. They are not occupying the stations, they are not exercising leadership in
that branch of Masonry that is fundamental and where good leadership is so essential.
Our new members are not brought into contact with that type of Mason who can give
them the vision of a true conception of what Masonry is. They are not receiving the
inspiration, not getting the social contacts that they expect and have a right to expect.
"Our stronger Masons must come to a realizing sense that they are doing Masonry a
real harm and putting Masonry into jeopardy, when they segregate themselves to the
Commandery, the Chapter, the Scottish Rite, etc., leaving the novice and the poorly
qualified to conduct the affairs of the local Blue Lodge.
"1 don't believe the members of the higher orders have realized this situation."
* * *
THE DOORS WIDE OPEN
One of our best admired contemporaries, a Masonic monthly edited with discretion and
printed with taste, carries on its cover a symbolic representation of the doors that lead
into the Masonic Temple. Significantly enough, these portals, which swing inward as
all portals of initiation necessarily do, are wide open, and it is evident that they are
intended to remain so.
Is not this a misinterpretation of the actual facts? is it not true that the portals of
Freemasonry are closed to all without, save when they are opened to them from within?
In a sense, yes, but not in the sense interpreted by this symbolic representation. For the
real door that opens into the Temple of Freemasonry is not that of wood which swings
upon its iron hinges, but the will, the purpose, and the qualifications, mental and moral,
which exist in a Due man. To all such who are thus properly qualified the doors of
Freemasonry are ever open. Yea, in a real sense, as hinted by one of the old texts of the
V.S.L., it is the true and upright man who is himself the door to the Fraternity; for
when all is said and done, Freemasonry is not a thing of stones, wood, doors, buildings,
and external trappings, but rather is it a circle of open minds and true hearts to which
any man is welcome if he be worthy of such a place.
Indeed, it is everlastingly true that we can enter into nothing for which we are not
inwardly prepared. What is music to a man who has no music in his ear? Of what use
are vast libraries of books to him who cannot or will not read? what avail ten thousand
schools to one who prefers darkness to light? of what value are all the just laws of a
noble land to the citizen who has no conscience in his breast? All the great true eternal
things in life, the things which are life itself, if life is to be anything more than mere
existence, are for them only who are truly prepared for them. The doors are ever open
day and night. All the millions of Freemasons cannot keep one man out of
Freemasonry who is already a Freemason in his soul.
* * *
GUILDS AND MASON'S MARKS IN THE ORIENT
Among the men of this nation who are now doing most to rescue the rest of us from
foggy thinking and foolish creeds Professor John Dewey holds a privileged place,
seeing that he is a teacher of teachers, and a writer whose books are revered by young
men and women in all the continents. I do not know whether he is a Mason or not: if he
is not he should be, and could be too, for his great work on "Education and
Democracy" proves him worthy and well qualified. That he can write as well as think,
and is full of the human qualities of tenderness, humor, and friendliness, is proved by
his "Letters from China and Japan," a volume of letters which he and his wife wrote
back to their children during a year in the Orient.
But this is not a book review. Ye scribe calls attention to the fact that "Letters from
China and Japan" contains two items of some interest to Masonic students. In a letter
written from Peking (page 261) Professor Dewey remarks, while writing of a visit to
the Higher Normal School of that city, that "the head of the industrial department, who
acted as our guide and host, has been organizing the 'national industry' activity in
connection with the student's agitation. He is now, among other things, trying to
organize apprentice schools under guild control." To those who have supposed craft
guilds a thing long extinct this should prove a clue worth following. On page 72 is
another item of similar import, and proves how natural and how inevitable, and in all
countries, has been the employment of "mason's marks." While describing a reception
tendered him in the Arsenal Grounds at Tokyo he writes a paragraph which shows that
Japanese carpenters employed marks in the old times, just as Masons did in England
and on the Continent. "On one side the Imperial Government is theocratie, and this is
the most sensitive side, so that historical criticism or analysis of old documents is not
indulged in, the Ancestors being Gods or the Gods being Ancestors. One bureaucratic
gentleman felt sure that the divine ancestors must have left traces of their own language
somewhere, so he investigated the old shrines, and sure enough he found on sonle of
the beams characters different from Chinese or Japanese. These he copied and showed
for the original language - till some carpenters saw them and explained that they were
the regular guild marks."
Both China and Japan are rich, historically and contemporaneously, in matters of
peculiar interest to Freemasons. The unfortunate thing is that much of the literature -
perhaps one should write it "literature" - purporting to deal with secret societies,
guilds, etc., in the Orient has been produced by cotton-headed gentlemen utterly devoid
of accurate knowledge. The men and women of the Orient are human beings, not
magicians, sages, and miracle workers: their history is real history to be studied like
any other history; and they live in a real world among cold facts where 2 plus 2 equals
4, as among us. Books about the Orient should be written in the pragmatic spirit, which
is to say, in the spirit that pervades the letters of Professor Dewey, who is for the
present the high priest of pragmatism in this country.
* * *
WHEN IS A MAN A "HIGHER GRADE" MASON?
A Freemason is a man who believes that the power of God is behind and beneath him,
like the ground under his feet, and that the love of God is over him like the sky: who
believes in the endlessness of human life; who believes that it is the nature of man to be
friendly; and who allies himself with the Honorable Society of Ancient Free and
Accepted Masons, in order to join with like-minded men in the furtherance of such
ideals. When such a Mason has by his intelligent faithfulness surpassed the rank and
file of his fellows so that he understands and practices Freemasonry more than they do,
he becomes entitled to enroll among the members of the "higher grades." Unless his
membership in those honorable ranks is thus honestly won, all his badges and
distinctions and the long train of his titles are no more than the rattle of an empty
wagon on the street.
— o —
BY BRO. GERALD NANCARROW, INDIANA
"I shall not gild thy house, my son,"
Breathed God upon His plan.
"I have laid the chisel by thy side,
Come, carve thyself a man."
"For even so near to me are Thou
That were I less than I,
I jealous were of mine own work
And would not let thee try."
"Come build thee strong and true and high
With these bright tools ye see,
A kingly mansion, O my Son!
And thou shalt rule with Me!"
— o —
Masonic links compose a sacred chain
Of holy brightness and unmeasured length;
The world, with selfish rust and reckless stain,
May mar its beauty but not touch its strength.
— o —
THE UNSEARCHABLE RICHES OF FREEMASONRY
Mackey's Revised History of Freemasonry, Robert I. Clegg. Seven volumes, De Luxe
fabrikoid binding. Published by the Masonic History Company, 225 North Michigan
Avenue, Chicago, III. For sale by The National Masonic Research Society, Anamosa,
Iowa. Price $56.00.
SOME FIELDS of reading and research are complete in themselves, so that a man
never exhausts them or grows weary but finds his interest new every morning and his
delight growing by what it feeds upon. Subjects less rich in resources are exhausted at
last and pall upon one, but these larger subjects are inexhaustible so that nobody ever
comes to the end of them, and he who has given his life to them feels at the end like Sir
Isaac Newton who had merely snatched a handful of sand from the limitless supplies of
the ocean. All the major sciences, the fine arts, the larger industries, some forms of
business, and a few other fields more difficult to classify, such as theology and
philosophy, are of such a character. They constitute in themselves a complete system of
culture, so that a man who makes himself at home with them achieves for himself an
education which, though it may always be enriched by additions from other sources, is
nevertheless complete and satisfying in and of itself. To become the servant of any one
of these major arts and sciences is to be put into possession of those truths and uses of
the mind whereby one becomes a matured man, fruitful in labors and worthy of dignity
and honor. He is like one that has won at last to a mountain top - his position puts him
into possession of the whole country. And, so far as that is concerned, it matters little
what mountain he has elected for his own, if only it be one that gives him a
Freemasonry is such a subject. It is not as public as some, or as popular as others, and
its nature and extent may not always be known to its own sons, but for all that it is, like
one of the sciences, or professions, or an art, a world within the world, a life inside life,
a complete circle of interest inside of which any man may find a rich culture. It
infinitives itself in all directions, one of its interests leading to another and that to a
third and so on in an endless chain, until one discovers that he who ascends the mount
of Masonic learning is master of one of the major peaks, and in possession of a vast
country. "I have been studying Masonry for thirty years," once remarked our veteran
colleague and brother, J.T. Thorp, "and don't know much about it now," the contrast
being not to the paucity of the rewards of such long study, but to the inexhaustibleness
of the subject studied. The life-long pursuit of Masonic knowledge is one of the most
richly rewarding activities in which any man can engage. For, as Albert Pike wrote
when himself grown old, "There is nothing which will so well remunerate a man, when
the days of his life are shortening to the winter solstice, as faithful service in the true
interest of Masonry." The Craft is as large as the world itself, and somewhere or other
connects with every vital human interest on the periphery of life.
"A Mason's ways are
A type of Existence;
And his persistence
Is as the days are
Of men in this world."
For these reasons I refuse to think of Freemasonry as being merely a lodge, or even as
being nothing more than a Fraternity. Neither do I like to think of it as one among
many secret societies, which have a curious but not an urgent interest. Freemasonry is
one of the great public institutions like the home, government, the courts, the church,
and the public school. It has played its own great part in history, and has for itself its
own long chapter in the troubled annals of our race. Our clubs and societies are little
sanctuaries by the way, kindly and cheerful places of refreshment. Freemasonry is a
great home at the end of the road in which men may find work, food and peace all their
days. To grow old in its service, to leam all its ways, to be a faithful son to it, is to live
such a life as that described in the First Psalm where a good man is described as a tree
planted by living waters.
The riches of Freemasonry do not lie on the surface. There are many obstacles to be
met and many difficulties to be overcome by the man who would possess himself of it,
especially if he seeks to appropriate it intellectually. The ritual is to the casual member
sealed and hidden and written in a dead language. The symbols are as mute as the
hieroglyphics of Egypt to one who has not the key. The philosophy of the Craft is not a
fool's paradise of easy ideas for children to play with. Above all - and it is to this that I
call special attention - the history of the Order has not always been made safe or
available to Masons, especially to those without time or gifts for laborious research.
There is no virtue in these facts: quite the contrary! The ritual should be unsealed to
every Mason, the symbols interpreted, the philosophy be made plain, and the story of
the Craft straightforwardly told in plain language. There are many mysteries, and
necessarily so, in Freemasonry, but there need be no mystification.
To my own mind the great value of the newly revised edition of Mackey's History of
Freemasonry lies in the fact that it now presents to each man a key to these
unsearchable riches of Masonry. In the language of one of the old mystics, "It puts a
man at home in the house." The Fraternity's own past, which is one of its greatest
treasures, and which, more than anything else, is fit to inspire a Mason with reverence
and love for it, is brought out into the open, into the sunlight, and made available to the
common man who can't read Hebrew, Greek, or Medieval English.
To read through these seven volumes is like going on a journey through many lands,
with stop-overs in great cities, and side trips among ancient ruins. One begins with
Prehistoric Masonry. He reads the story of the various Legends of the Craft, and learns
about the Old Manuscripts, with digressions into the quaint stories of Lamech's Sons,
the Tower of Babel, the Legends of Nimrod, and the Legend of Euclid. The origins of
the Fraternity are admittedly a mystery but certain of our great men have circulated
hypotheses about it, and these are reviewed in chapters on Anderson, Preston,
Hutchinson and Oliver. The author then undertakes an account of his own and begins,
where it is necessary to begin, with the Temple of Solomon: thereafter come the
Dionysian Artificers, the Ancient Mysteries, the Druids, the Crusades - a fascinating
chapter - the Scottish Templars, the Story of the House of Stuart, of the Jesuits, and of
the intriguing tale of Oliver Cromwell and his supposed connection with the Order.
This is but one-seventh of the journey. In Volume II there is a much needed chapter on
The Royal Society. Then come the occult groups, the tale of which has been repeated
numberless times but never exhausted; the Astrologers, the Rosicrucians, the
Pythagoreans, the Gnostics, and the Essenes. Then follows an excellent critical account
of the Hiram Abif Legend, and the first main portion of the work, Prehistoric Masonry,
The History of Freemasonry in the eyes of the author, and strictly so-called, begins on
page 481, of Volume II, with the Roman Collegia. It is a great world in itself and there
is not space here to follow the itinerary further, or even to sketch in an account of the
main heads, which are very many. If any Mason is desirous of possessing himself of
the "unsearchable riches" of Masonry he can do so in these seven volumes. To read
them is an education, and a discipline that every Mason owes to himself.
The ground plan of this magnum opus was laid out, and great stores of data
accumulated, by Albert G. Mackey, to whose enduring and gentle fame this issue of
THE BUILDER is dedicated. It was Dr. Mackey's hope to make this the crown of his
life's labor but unhappily death cut him off before he had completed it. Brother William
R. Singleton took his place and brought the manuscript to shape for publication and
gave it to the world in a shape now long familiar. It is probable that more men have
been given an adequate sense of the vast scope of Freemasonry by this History than by
any other work, with possibly the exception of the Encyclopedia. But it happens that
Mackey laid down his pen at the very time when a new era of Masonic scholarship was
reaching its meridian: Lyon, Crawley, Gould, Speth, Hughan and many others of equal
fame had organized a new school of Masonic scholarship, and there is no telling what
will yet be the outcome of their labors, seeing that every year finds some new bit of the
hitherto unknown discovered, explored and claimed for Masonic knowledge. Owing to
this new uncovering of rich deposits of lore it became necessary at last to revise the
History. This difficult and responsible task was entrusted to the general editorship of
Brother Robert I. Clegg, than whom there is not in all the land a better known or more
beloved Masonic student and writer, and whose name is thrice familiar to these pages.
It is to him, and to the equally indefatigable labors of Brother Walter C. Burrell,
President of The Masonic History Publishing Company, that we are indebted for the
new edition of the old familiar work.
As to the calibre of the scholarship revealed by Brother Clegg's work of revision I
cannot do better than to quote a paragraph from a letter from my friend David E. W.
Williamson, to whose learning this Society has been often indebted:
“I have just completed the seven volumes and am much impressed with it, as I wrote to
Brother Clegg. His own work is in evidence everywhere and the immense erudition
displayed makes the book a real Masonic library. The old history has been improved at
so many points as to make the Revised History virtually a new work. Dr. Gasho, a
brother who is much interested in all these things, has the edition to which Singleton
contributed, with the final chapter by Hughan, and it is only necessary to compare
volume by volume to realize that here Bro. Clegg and his associates have brought
every subject down to date."
The seven new volumes are a delight to see especially as regards the binding and the
illustrations. The index is very complete, and there are many footnotes. Take it up one
side and down the other it would be difficult anywhere to find a set of books that will
more easily enable a man of modest equipment and of little leisure to make his own
all "the height and depth, and length and breadth, and the unsearchable riches" of
Freemasonry. H.L. Haywood.
* * *
A NEW EDITION OF MACKEY'S SYMBOLISM
"Mackey's Symbolism of Freemasonry," revised by Robert I. Clegg; published by
Masonic History Company Chicago. De Luxe fabrikoid binding. For sale by Nationai
Masonic Research Society. Price $3.65 postpaid.
Dear old Mackey! as one turns over the aging pages of the old books he seems as near
and as alive as ever. He is always quiet, always gentle, and he never resorts to the tricks
of the writers' trade to capture attention, but for all that there is a certain virility about
him that age cannot wither or custom stale. Of all the writers of the older school he is
the most contemporaneous, and far and away the most influential. More copies of his
works are being sold today than of any recent writer and there is no doubt but that this
will long continue. Mackey is a great and universal Masonic influence with whom
every student and reader of Masonry must acquaint himself.
Mackey was at his best in writing on the symbolism of Freemasonry. It was a task for
which the bent of his mind and the nature of his learning peculiarly fitted him. Later
writers, many of them, have been more scientific, and any number have been more
clever, but few have possessed that peculiar quality of mind that set Mackey apart as a
symbologist of the first order.
Masonic symbolism is a subject which, by virtue of its own nature, does not very
rapidly outgrow itself. Mackey issued the first edition of his "Symbolism of
Freemasonry" in 1869. Since that date the whole field of Masonic scholarship has been
revolutionized from top to bottom; the school of Preston and Oliver has vanished and
time has outlawed most of what they wrote; but, owing to the nature of the subject,
there is comparatively little of the "Symbolism" that must be altogether discarded. The
famous "nineteen propositions" of the first chapter which "contain a brief but succinct
view of the progress of Freemasonry," and the arguments concerning "The Noachidae"
and "Primitive" and "Spurious" "Freemasonry of Antiquity," are now of very little
value, and so with a few other pages here and there. Compared with the total bulk of
the work this is almost negligible.
Brother Robert I. Clegg, editor of the new edition of the book, has added two
paragraphs to Mackey's original Preface and has included a valuable chapter of his own
by way of "An Introduction to Symbolism," but elsewhere has made few changes.
"Up to this point," writes Brother Clegg in his addition to the Preface, "we have used
the preface written by the great student and need now but explain the work of revision,
Brother Mackey's examination of Masonic symbols is today as of yore admirable and
stimulating. No Freemason at all worthy of the name can read it without pleasure and
profit. All that was necessary for us to do was to make corrections of errors that crept
into the book, and add here and there such comments as seemed to us to be most
helpful to the reader in the light of our present-day knowledge of the institution.
"The chapter on an Introduction to Symbolism is new and prepared by the reviser for
this edition. Here as elsewhere the purpose has been to do as Brother Mackey would no
doubt have wished the work to be done; to correct the text with every respect for the
lofty purpose of the original author, and to add such amendments as would in the same
way better facilitate the reader's progress."
Again Brother Clegg writes in his Introduction: "Brother Mackey put into his study of
Symbolism the ripened researches of many years. No other book of his more clearly
shows the depth of his reading and reflection. His was the wisdom that never lacked
words of simplest worth to make it known and understood. None so clearly as he could
fit lucid language to the exposition of what he knew of Freemasonry. And none packed
into his sentences more meaty food for reflection."
The titles of the thirty-two chapters will furnish a reader with a more adequate
conception of the contents of the book than a great deal of description could do. They
are: An Introduction to Symbolism; Preliminary, Origin and Progress of Freemasonry;
Noachidae; Primitive Freemasonry of Antiquity; Spurious Freemasonry of Antiquity;
Ancient Mysteries; Dionysiac Artificers; Union of Speculative and Operative
Freemasonry at the Temple of Solomon; Traveling Freemasons of the Middle Ages;
Disseverance of the Operative Element; System of Symbolic Instruction; Speculative
Science and the Operative Art; Symbolism of Solomon's Temple; Form of the Lodge;
Officers of a Lodge; Point within a Circle; Covering of the Lodge; Ritualistic
Symbolism; Rite of Discalceation; Rite of Investiture; Symbolism of the Gloves; Rite
of Circumambulation; Rite of Intrusting, and Symbolism of Light; Symbolism of the
Comer Stone; Ineffable Name; Legends of Freemasonry; Legend of the Winding
Stairs; Legend of the Third Degree; Sprig of Acacia; Symbolism of Labor; Stone of
Foundation; Lost Word; and Synoptical Index.
The new edition is bound in De Luxe fahrikoid binding in color and design to match
the revised edition of Mackey's History of Freemasonry reviewed otherwhere in this
* * *
THE BOUND VOLUME OF THE BUILDER FOR 1922
The Bound Volume of THE BUILDER for 1922, bound in goldenrod buckram, title
in gilt, published by The National Masonic Research Society, Anamosa, Iowa. Price
This is to announce the advent of the Bound Volume of THE BUILDER for 1922,
copies of which may now be had. Readers should investigate this bound volume: many
of them will be surprised to discover how much it adds to the sightliness and
convenience of twelve issues of this journal. When each monthly issue is printed a
certain number of copies are especially prepared for binding. At the end of each year
these twelve especially printed copies are placed together with a complete descriptive
index of fourteen pages and securely bound in goldenrod buckram, with title label in
gold. No covers are bound in. Every page is absolutely unused, and the whole is so
numbered as to form a complete book of about 375 pages of the same size as THE
BUILDER. In the index is furnished a guide to each and every item that has appeared
during the year, along with cuts, authors, books, etc., by means of which one can
locate anything at a moment's notice. The volume is beautiful in appearance, in
typography, paper, illustrations, arrangement and size. It is an ideal Christmas gift for
This is the eighth of such volumes thus far issued by The National Masonic Research
Society. Taken together these eight books constitute the most comprehensive and
accurate Masonic library in existence. They contain more than 400 complete signed
articles on important Masonic topics; hundreds of replies to questions about Masonry;
and editorials, letters, poems and book reviews on nearly every matter of consequence
connected with Freemasonry. Such a set of books is an ideal foundation for a private
Nothing is of merely local or temporary interest. Everything is designed for
permanency and for universality. THE BUILDER does not reflect sectional views; it
does not represent any party or clique or rite; it is not published for commercial
purposes. For these reasons a set of the Bound Volumes is not a file of old magazines,
the interest of which must necessarily fade with the passage of time, but a set of books,
the first page of which is as interesting as the last; an encyclopedia of Masonry, the
value of which increases with the addition of each new Bound Volume.
Contained within this set of books is a number of Masonic books published in serial
form. He who owns the set possesses Pound's "Philosophy of Freemasonry"; Pound's
"Lectures on Masonic Jurisprudence"; Ravenscroffs "The Comacines"; Haywood's
"Symbolical Masonry"; Haywood's "The Teachings of Masonry"; Wright's "Woman
and Freemasonry"; Wright's "Roman Catholicism and Freemasonry"; Pike's
"Humanum Genus"; Lawrence's "Military Lodges"; Barry's "The Story of Old Glory";
Street's "Symbolism of the Three Degrees"; Goodwin's "Mormonism and Masonry,"
* * *
A VEST POCKET BOOK ON FREEMASONRY
"What is Masonry," by Francis E. Lester, P.G.M., New Mexico. Published by the
author, Mesilla Park, New Mexico.
This is a vest pocket volume on a big subject. Brother Lester tells us in his
introductory page that at the time he was raised he was unable to learn much about the
institution of which he had become a member, or of the ceremonies in which he had
participated. "The one thing that was missing was the kindly explanation by a brother
of what relation Masonry, with its teaching and ritual, bore to the duties and
responsibilities of daily life." This booklet of thirty pages, bound in blue paper, is a
"kindly explanation" of many of the things about which a newly raised Mason is most
anxious to learn, and to all such it is to be recommended. On the last page there is a
list of some twenty or so books "suggested for supplementary reading": it is an
excellent brief bibliography. Copies may be secured from the author.
— o —
PUBLICATIONS WANTED, FOR SALE, AND EXCHANGE
We are constantly receiving inquiries from readers as to where they may obtain
publications on Freemasonry and kindred subjects not offered in our Monthly Book
List. Most of the books thus sought are out of print, but it may happen that other
readers, owning copies, may be willing to dispose of the same. Therefore this column is
set aside each month for such a service. And it is also hoped - and expected - that
readers possessing very old or rare Masonic works will communicate the fact to THE
BUILDER in behalf of general information.
Postoffice addresses are here given in order that those buying and selling may
communicate directly with each other. Brethren are asked to cancel notices as soon as
their wants are supplied.
In no case does TEIE BUILDER assume any responsibility whatsoever for publications
thus bought, sold, exchanged or borrowed.
By Bro. G. Alfred Lawrence, 142 West 86th St., New York, N. Y.: Proceedings of the
Scottish Rite Body founded by Joseph Cemeau in New York City in 1808, of which De
Witt Clinton was the first Grand Commander, and which body became united, in 1867,
with the Supreme Council of the Northern Masonic Jurisdiction, A. & A. S. R. Also
Proceedings of the Supreme Council founded in New York by De La Motta, in 1813,
by authority of the Southern Supreme Council, of which he was Grand Treasurer-
General, these Proceedings from 1813 to 1860.
By Bro. Frank R. Johnson, 306 East 10th St., Kansas City, Mo.: "The Year Book,"
published by the Masonic Constellations, containing the History of the Grand Council,
R. & S. M., of Missouri.
By Brother Silas H. Shepherd, Hartland, Wisconsin: "Catalogue of the Masonic
Library of Samuel Lawrence"; "Second Edition of Preston's Illustrations of Masonry";
"The Source of Measures," by J. Ralston Skinner 1875, or second edition 1894; "Ars
Quatuor Coronatorum," volumes I to XI inclusive.
By Bro. Ernest E. Ford, 305 South Wilson Avenue, Alhambra, California: "Ars
Quatuor Coronatorum," volumes 3 and 7, with St. John's Cards, also St. John's Cards
for volumes 4 and 6; "Masonic Review," volumes 1, 2, 7, 31, 32 and 43 to 60,
inclusive; "Voice of Masonry," volumes 2 to 12 inclusive, and volume 16; Transactions
Supreme Council Southern Jurisdiction for the years 1882 and 1886; Original
Proceedings of The General Grand Encampment Knights Templar for the years 1826
By Bro. George A. Lanzarotti, Casilla 126, Rancagua, Chile: All kinds of Masonic
literature in Spanish. Write first quoting prices.
By Brother L. Rask, 14 Alvey St., Schenectady, N. Y.: "Remarks upon Alchemy and
the Alchemists," by E. A. Hitchcock, Janesville, N. Y., about 1866; "The Secret
Societies of all Ages and Countries," by C. W. Heckethom; "Lost Language of
Symbolism," by Harold Bayley, published by Lippincott; "Sacred Hermeneutics," by
Davidson, Edinburgh, 1843; "Solar System of the Ancients Discovered," by J. Wilson,
published by Longmans Co., London, 1856; "The Alphabet," by Isaac Taylor, Kegan,
Paul, Trench & Co., 1883, or the edition of 1899 published by Scribners, New York;
"Anacalypsis," by Godfrey Higgins, 1836, published by Longmans, Green & Co.,
London; "Ars Quatuor Coronatorum," any volume or volumes.
By Brother N. W. J. Haydon, 664 Pape Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, Canada: "The
Beautiful Necessity," and "Architecture and Democracy," by Claude Bragdon.
By the National Masonic Research Society, Anamosa, Iowa: "Discourses upon
Architecture," by Dallaway, published in 1833; any or all volumes of "The American
Freemasons' Magazine," published by J. F. Brennan, about 1860.
By Brother E. A. Marsh, 820 Broad Ave. N. W., Canton, Ohio: "Numbers: Their
Occult Power and Mystic Virtue," by William Wynn Westcott, published 1902 by the
Theosophical Publishing Society.
By Bro. D. D. Berolzheimer, 1 Madison Ave., New York, N. Y.: "Realities of
Masonry," Blake, 1879; "Records of the Hole Craft and Fellowship of Masons,"
Condor, 1894; "Masonic Bibliography," Carson, 1873; "Origin of Freemasonry,"
By Brother A. A. Bumand, 690 South Bronson Ave., Eos Angeles, California: Various
Masonic publications including such as a complete set of "Ars Quatuor Coronatorum";
"History of Freemasonry in Scotland," by D. Murray Fyon, (original edition); Thomas
Dunckerley, Faurence Dermott, etc.
By Brother Frank R. Johnson, 306 East 10th St., Kansas City, Mo.: "History of
Freemasonry," Mitchell, 2 volumes, sheep; "History of Freemasonry," Robert Freke
Gould, 4 volumes, cloth in good condition; "History of Freemasonry," Albert G.
Mackey, 7 volumes, linen cloth, new; Addison's "Knights Templar," Macoy, 1 volume,
cloth; "Museum of Antiquity," Yaggy, 1 volume, morocco; "History and Cyclopedia of
Freemasonry," Macoy and Oliver, new, full morocco. Also miscellaneous books.
— o —
THE QUESTION BOX
THE BUILDER is an open forum for free and fraternal discussion. Each of its
contributors writes under his own name, and is responsible for his own opinions.
Believing that a unity of spirit is better than a uniformity of opinion, the Research
Society, as such, does not champion any one school of Masonic thought as over against
another, but offers to all alike a medium for fellowship and instruction, leaving each to
stand or fall by its own merits.
The Question Box and Correspondence Column are open to all members of the Society
at all times. Questions of any nature on Masonic subjects are earnestly invited from our
members, particularly those connected with lodges or study clubs which are following
our Study Club course. When requested, questions will be answered promptly by mail
before publication in this department.
INFORMATION ABOUT THE PUBLIC SCHOOL CRISIS
THE BUILDER for August interested me more than any copy I have ever seen. My
copy is worn out with lending. Can you tell me where I can find some more literature
like it? M.L.B., Virginia.
The Bureau of Social and Educational Service of the Grand Lodge of New York issued
as their Bulletin No. 3, for March 2, 1922, a twenty-four page booklet on "The Public
School Crisis," in which was incorporated a valuable list of up-to-date pamphlets and
booklets on the subject, written from every possible angle. The list could not be
American City Bureau, 154 Nassau Street, New York. Ask for "Know and Help Your
Schools," Third Report of National Committee for Chamber of Commerce Cooperation
with the Public Schools. George D. Strayer, Chairman.
American Council of Education, Washington, D. C. Ask for reprint from School and
Society, Vol. 13, No. 321, article by Samuel P. Capen.
American Legion Weekly, 627 West 43d Street, New York. Ask for issue of Dec. 2,
1921, article, "The American's Part in Americanism," by Warren G. Harding. Also
Report of Conference of Board of Directors of National Education Association and
Representatives of the American Legion, June 3, 1921, at Des Moines, Iowa.
American Physical Education Review, 93 Westford Avenue, Springfield, Mass. Ask
for "Report of Committee of Society of Directors of Physical Education in Colleges."
Also "The Aims and Scope of Physical Education."
Mrs. Rogers H. Bacon, 210 E. 61st Street, New York City, Chairman, Plan and
Program Committee, Women's Clubs of Greater New York. Ask for "Report to Board
of Education on School Building Conditions in New York City."
Boston League of Women Voters, 553 Little Building, Boston, Mass. Ask for "How
Our United States Spends Its Income," Leaflet, by E. B. Bosa.
The Bureau of the Census, Washington, D. C. Ask for circular, "Composition and
Characteristics of the Population." Also "Men and Women of Voting Age." Also
"Citizenship of the Foreign Bom."
United States Bureau of Education, Washington, D.C. Ask for "Report of the
Commissioner for the year ended June 30, 1921." Also "Education for the
Establishment of Democracy," Address by P. P. Claxton, late Commissioner of
Education. Also "Cost of Education in the United States," Circular by P. P. Claxton.
Also "Expenditures for Public Education in New York," Circular by P. P. Claxton.
Bureau of Naturalization, Washington, D. C. Ask for "Annual Report of the
Chamber of Commerce of the United States, Washington, D. C. Ask for "Schools,
Citizenship, and Business," Civic Development Publication No. 4.
Committee on Education, House of Representatives, Washington, D. C. Ask for
"Hearing on Illiteracy under H R 15402."
The National Catholic Weekly, 225 West 39th Street, New York. Ask for "The Case
Against the Smith-Towner Bill; Shall the Federal Government Control Our Schools ?"
Pamphlet by Paul H. Blakely, Ph.D.
National Education Association, 1201 16th Street N. W., Washington, D. C. Ask for
"American Education Week," December 4-10, 1921," Bulletin No. 16. Also "A
National Program for Education," Pamphlet. Also "Education and the Federal
Government," Pamphlet, by Hugh S. Magill. Also "The SmithTowner Bill; A
Discussion of Its Fundamental Principles and Brief History of Movement for a
Department of Education," Pamphlet, by Hugh S. Magill.
Hon. Horace M. Towner, House of Representatives, Washington, D.C. H R 7. Ask for
copy of "Towner-Sterling Bill."
Public Education Association, 8 West 40th Street, New York. Ask for "A Primer of
Public School Progress." Also Bulletins Nos. 4, 25, 104, 105, 106, 109, 110, 111, 112,
113, 114, 116, 117, 118, 119, 120.
Russell Sage Foundation, Lexington Avenue and 22d Street, New York. Ask for
"Trend of School Costs," by Warren Randolph Burgess. $1.00.
School and Society, 1 1 Liberty Street, Utica, N. Y. Ask for Inaugural Address of Frank
Pierrepont Graves, as Commissioner of Education for the State of New York, "A State
and Its Edcation," Vol. 14, No. 357.
University of the State of New York, Albany, N. Y. Ask for "Americanization in
Industry," by Caroline A. Whipple. Also "Community Organization and Program for
Americanization Work," by William C. Smith. Also "Education Law as Amended to
July 1, 1920," Bulletin 707. Also "Financial Independence of Boards of Education,"
Pamphlet by Frank B. Gilbert. Also "Immigrant Education," by William C. Smith. Also
"Organization and Administration of Part-Time Schools," Bulletin No. 697. Also
"School Health Service and Medical Inspection Law."
* * *
SCOTTISH RITE PRESIDENTS OF THE UNITED STATES
Can we tell me how many of our Presidents have been members of the Scottish Rite?
M. K. L., Indiana.
Your query was referred to Brother William L. Boy den, Librarian of the Supreme
Council, Southern Jurisdiction, who kindly gave us information as follows:
James A. Garfield was a member of the 14th degree of the Rite and made so in Mithras
Lodge of Perfection, Washington, D. C., January 2, 1872.
Andrew Johnson received the degrees from the 4th to the 32nd by communication,
June 20, 1867, at the White House.
Warren G. Harding received the 32nd degree in Scioto Consistory, Columbus, Ohio,
January 5, 1921, and has been elected for the 33rd in the Northern Masonic
* * *
I am in search of a poem based on the letters on the keystone and beginning with "H."
The first lines are:
"Happy the man whose thoughts will bear
The rigid test of the compasses and square."
Can some brother help me out? F. H. C., Wisconsin.
Will some reader please give us this poem?
STARRY DECKED HEAVEN
Please inform me what is meant by a phrase in the monitor about the "clouded canopy
or starry decked heaven." It is the word "decked" that puzzles me. B. M. T., Idaho.
The word is of medieval origin and appears to have been common to Teutonic peoples.
In old English it appears as "deccan" and means "to thatch over or cover a house," by
which it is seen to belong to the same group of words - so far as our ideas are
concerned - as our "tiler." From this use it came in time to signify generally any
covering or clothing, and more especially fine clothing, as when we now say of a
woman that she is "decked out in finery." Hence also the word "bedecked." The old
Coverdale Bible of 1535 used the word in at least two instances: "She coloured her
face, and decked her headed II Kings, ix, 30. "Thou deckest thyself with light as it were
with a garment." Psalms, ciii, 2.
This makes clear the meaning of the phrase about which you inquire. "The starry
decked heaven" is the night sky covered, or clothed, with stars. It is real poetry, worthy
* * *
THE CEDARS OF THE FORESTS OF LEBANON
Can you kindly furnish me with some information about the Cedars of Lebanon? I am
studying the First degree.
After looking through a number of Masonic articles on this subject we discovered that
the article in the Encyclopedia Britannica, Vol. 5, page 594, contains all such
information as well as much beside: accordingly we are reprinting here that entire
Cedras Libani, the far-famed Cedar of Lebanon, is a tree which, on account of its
beauty, stateliness and strength, has always been a favourite with poets and painters,
and which, in the figurative language of prophecy, is frequently employed in the
Scriptures as a symbol of power, prosperity and longevity. It grows to a vertical
height of from 50 to 80 ft. - "exalted above all trees of the field" - and at an elevation
of about 6000 ft above sea-level. In the young tree, the bole Is straight and upright
and one or two leading branches rise above the rest. As the tree increases in size,
however, the upper branches become mingled together, and the tree is then clump-
headed. Numerous lateral ramifying branches spread out from the main trunk in a
horizontal direction, tier upon tier, covering a compass of ground the diameter of
which is often greater than the height of the tree. William Gilpin, in his Forest
Scenery, describes a cedar which, at an age of about 118 years, had attained to a
height of 53 ft. and had a horizontal expanse of 96 ft. The branchlets of the cedar
take the same direction as the branches, and the foliage is very dense. The tree, as
with the rest of the fir-tribe, except the larch, is evergreen; new leaves are developed
every spring, but their fall is gradual. In shape the leaves are straight, tapering,
cylindrical and pointed; they are about 1 in. long wad of a dark green color, and grow
in alternate tufts of about thirty in number. The male and female flowers grow on the
same tree, but are separate. The cones, which are on the upper side of the branches,
are flattened at the ends and are 4 to 5 in. in length and 2 in. wide; they take two years
to come to perfection and while growing exude much resin. The scales are close
pressed to one another and are reddish in color. The seeds are provided with a long
membranous wing. The root of the tree is very strong and ramifying. The cedar
flourishes best on sandy, loamy soils. It still grows on Lebanon, though for several
centuries it was believed to be restricted to a small grove in the Kadisha valley at
6000 ft. elevation, about 15 m. from Beyrout. The number of trees in this grove has
been gradually diminishing, and as no young trees or seedlings occur, the grove will
probably become extinct in course of time. Cedars are now known to occur in great
numbers on Mt. Lebanon, chiefly on the western slopes, not forming a continuous
forest but in groves, some of which contain several thousands of trees. There are also
large forests on the higher slopes of the Taurus and Anti-Taurus mountains.
Lamartine tells us that the Arabs regard the trees as endowed with the principles of
continual existence, and with reasoning and prescient powers, which enable them to
prepare for the changes of the seasons.
The wood of the cedar of Lebanon is fragrant, though not so strongly scented as that
of the juniper or red-cedar of America. The wood is generally reddish-brown, light
and of a coarse grain and spongy texture, easy to work, but liable to shrink and warp.
Mountain-grown wood is harder, stronger, less liable to warp and more durable.
The cedar of Lebanon is cultivated in Europe for ornament only. It can be grown in
parks and gardens, and thrives well; but the young, plants are unable to bear great
variations of temperature. The cedar is not mentioned in Evelyn's Silva (1664), but it
must have been introduced shortly afterwards. The famous Enfield cedar was planted
by Dr. Robert Uvedale (1642-1722), a noted schoolmaster and horticulturist, between
1662-1670, and an old cedar at Bretby Park in Derbyshire is known to have been
planted in 1676. Some very old cedars exist also at Syon House, Woburn Abbey,
Warwick Castle and elsewhere, which presumably date from the 17th century. The
first cedars in Scotland were planted at Hopetoun House in 1740; and the first one
said to have been introduced into France was brought from England by Bernard de
Jussieu in 1734, and placed in the Jardin des Plantes. Cedar-wood is earliest noticed
in Leviticus xiv, 4, 6, where it is prescribed among the materials to be used for the
cleansing of leprosy; but the wood there spoken of was probably that of the juniper.
The term Eres (cedar) of Scripture does not apply strictly to one kind of plant, but was
used indefinitely in ancient times, as is the word cedar at present. The term arz is
applied by the Arabs to the cedar of Lebanon, to the common pine-tree, and to the
juniper; and certainly the "cedars" for masts, mentioned in Ezek xxvii. 5, must have
been pine-trees. It seems very probable that the fourscore thousand hewers employed
by Solomon for cutting timber did not confine their operations simply to what would
now be termed cedars and fir-trees. Dr. John Lindley considered that some of the
cedar-trees sent by Hiram, king of Tyre, to Jerusalem might have been procured from
Mount Atlas, and have been Callitris quadrivalvis, or arar-tree, the wood of which is
hard and durable, and was much in request in former times for the building of
temples. The timber-work of the roof of Cordova cathedral, built eleven centuries
ago, is composed of it. In the time of Vitravius "cedars" were growing in Crete,
Africa and Syria. Pliny says that their wood was everlasting, and therefore images of
the gods were made of it; he makes mention also of the oil of cedar, or cedrium,
distilled from the wood, and used by the ancients for preserving their books from
moths and damp; papyri anointed or rubbed with cedrium were on this account called
ced ati libri. Drawers of cedar or chips of the wood are now employed to protect furs
and woollen stuffs from injury by moths. Cedar-wood, however, is said to be
injurious to natural history objects, and to instruments placed in cabinets made of it,
as the resinous matter of the wood becomes deposited upon them. Cedria, or cedar
resin, is a substance similar to mastic, that flows from incisions in the tree; and cedar
manna is a sweet exudation from its branches.
* * *
DUFFY'S "ORIGINAL THOUGHTS"
Can you tell me anything about a book called "Original Thoughts," by Duffy? I
imagine that it may be out of print now. L.D.S., South Carolina.
"Original Thoughts" was written by Brother Frank M. Duffy and published in 1868. Of
the author himself no memorials are at hand (unless perchance some reader of these
pages may have a record filed away), save that he was a member of Union Lodge No.
113, Xartsville, Tennessee. He must have been a man of noble character and fine mind,
else his book misrepresents him, for it is one of the most beautiful essays on
Freemasonry that ye scribe has ever read. It was composed in a day when Freemasonry
was identified with Geometry, and Geometry itself was, after the ancient fashion of
Plato, deemed a revelation of the Eternal mind: therefrom arose a blend of scientific
speculation and religious mysticism very seldomly met with now. "Original Thoughts"
does not call into question any of those views of Masonic history given currency by Dr.
Oliver and his school and is to that extent out of date, but the spirit in which the little
book was conceived will never fall from date unless it should turn out - which may
God prevent - that men will cease to feel reverence, wonder, and worship in the depths
of their nature. One of the few copies now known to exist is in the possession of
Brother J. E. Gwin, Hartsville, Tennessee.
* * *
AN AUTHENTIC BOOK ON SOLOMON'S TEMPLE
Can you tell me where I might purchase an authentic book on King Solomon's Temple,
containing illustrations? C.T.R., Ohio.
Among the well-nigh numberless books on the subject that might be mentioned two or
three will doubtless serve your purposes: "Solomon's Temple: Its History and Its
Structure," by the Rev. W. Shaw Caldecott. Preface by A. H. Sayce. The Union Press,
1816 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia. "The Tabernacle: Its History and Structure," by
same author and publisher. "The Temple, Its Ministry and Services as they were at the
Time of Jesus Christ," by Dr. Alfred Edersheim; Hodder and Stoughton, New York.
Captain Jerome B. Frisbee, Lindsay, California, has published a book on the Temple
very complete in diagrams and illustrations and unique in its interpretations.
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A RECORD AS SECRETARY
I saw in the March number of THE BUILDER (page 96) an account of Brother Arelius
M. Willoughby who had served as Secretary of Vincennes Lodge No. 1 of Vincennes,
Indiana, from 1876 to the present time excepting one year when he was elected Master,
making 45 years of service as Secretary, which is a record hard to beat.
Now I am somewhat of an antique secretary myself I was elected secretary of Roger
Williams Lodge No 32, F. & A. M., of Centerdale, Rhode Island, March 4, 1876, and
have served continuously to the present time June 10, 1922, and am still at it and am on
my 47th year of continuous service, which is the record for Rhode Island. I
congratulate Vincennes Lodge for having so interested and faithful a brother for their
secretary and hope he may live many years to enjoy the honor and pleasures of a well
spent life. Frank C. Angell, Rhode Island.
* * *
PERFECT CRAFTSMAN DEGREE
In order to stimulate interest in its work as a degree team, the Fellowcraft Association
connected with St. John's Lodge No. 3 A.F. & A.M. of Bridgeport, Connecticut, has
perfected an initiatory form, which is used to initiate its new candidates into the
Association, and teach them some of the duties connected with the privileges extended.
After being organized for thirteen years, it was found by experience that the members
of the Association, like the old saying "A new broom sweeps clean," came in the front
door, so to speak, and after a few years work gradually passed out the back door, and
new recruits took their places on the teams.
In order to make the work more interesting and attractive, the idea of having a little
side degree was hit upon, and as a novelty used to "razz" some of the popular members,
worked successfully for a while. It hit the nail on the head because "all work and no
play makes Jack a dull boy." Then the War came along, and many of the boys were
called to service, and scattered to the furthermost parts of the earth. When they returned
they still remembered the joys of the gatherings held before their departure, and the ball
was started rolling for something bigger and better. Accordingly, a committee was
appointed for the purpose of revising the ritual used. That committee did their work so
well that the degree at once came to be known as the "Perfected Craftsman's Degree"
from which the present name of "Perfect Craftsman Degree" came.
The Perfect Craftsman Degree is based on Masonic history and traditions, and
practically opposite in form from Blue Lodge work. The degree impresses on the mind
of the candidate the importance of his Masonic ties and obligations, and presents them
to him in a manner that makes an indellible impression upon his mind. The degree
instructs and amuses at the same time. In order to be sure that there was nothing used in
the work that would, in any way, conflict with Masonic Law and Practices the ritual
was submitted to the present Grand Master of Masons in Connecticut, M.’.W.’. Frank
L. Wilder, who referred the matter to a committee for examination and
recommendation, the result being that the degree work was found to be all right and
was endorsed as "harmless."
The ritual uses a vocabulary of its own; a local Association is known as a quarry, a
chair as a stone, etc. Since the new ritual was used for the first time last October (1921)
nine new quarries have been organized, and four more are about to be started. The fact
is that the movement, which has many aims along social development lines, has grown
so rapidly that the original Degree Committee has had to reorganize into what is known
as the "Activity Committee of Perfect Craftsman Quarries of Connecticut." The said
committee is organized solely for the purpose of developing the social side of Masonry.
Plans are being formulated for the arrangement of a schedule of fraternal visits for the
balance of the present season, and the winter of 1922-23, and for a monster Field Day
for all Blue Lodge Masons residing within the State of Connecticut, to be held at some
central point durmg the summer at which time a gathering, which will be a credit to the
Masonic institution, will be held.
The movement started is one of great importance to the Fraternity. It means that the
young blood in the Order is beginning to circulate, and it spells life and action for the
future. The motto of the movement is "Service, Sociability, and Cooperation": service
to the Master of the Blue Lodge that the Quarry is organized to serve, sociability
among the various quarries, and thereby closer cooperative work on subjects vital to
the welfare and advancement of our art.
The Master of the Blue Lodge that the individual quarries are organized in, is the head
of the quarry, and is known as the "Master of Light." At a recent meeting of the Perfect
Craftsmen held in Fair Haven, the lodge room was overcrowded, and the spirit that
prevailed among the members was wonderful. During the proper part of the meeting,
all of the Masters present spoke in favor of the movement; all testified to the great
amount of good it had done their work already by the true service and stimulating
interest it has brought about without any advertising effort or cost.
Brother Howard W. Gorham, 36 Harmony Street, Bridgeport, Conn., is acting as the
Chairman of the Activity Committee referred to, and stands ready to give any "Service
to Masonry" information requested in regard to the movement, on behalf of the quarries
in Connecticut, to sister jurisdictions.
Good buttons of special design have been made up and serve to identify the workers on
the various teams in the Blue Lodge.
The advantages of a local quarry are numerous. The degree work gives the incoming
master of the Blue Lodge an opportunity to select men of talent and service when
making his appointments to the various stations of trust and work.
It is said that in every lodge where a Quarry has been established there is a revival of
interest and a great outpouring of members to the meetings, and all activities of the
Blue Lodge. It is the inexorable law of the Craft to press forward and never turn back
until their work is completed - "Service to Masonry" is the slogan. Ray V. Denslow,
* * *
MORE INFORMATION ABOUT GENERAL ARTHUR SAINT CLAIR
I was very much pleased with Admiral Baird's article on General Saint Clair in the July
"THE BUILDER," as I always am with anything he writes.
There is one feature he overlooked and which I trust he will pardon me for mentioning
as it is a matter which should never be forgotten when speaking of General Arthur
Saint Clair. That is, he was a member of the well-known Saint Clair or Sinclair family
whose head, William Sinclair of Roslyn, was the hereditary Grand Master when the
Grand Lodge of Scotland was formed. In this Sinclair family the Grand Mastership had
been handed down for over 200 years, according to the Scottish traditions. The
Encyclopedia Brittannica tells of Thurso castle, near the town of Thurso, which is 367
miles north of Edinburgh and which town is noted for its stone quarries to this day.
General Arthur Saint Clair was bom at Thurso castle in 1734 and hence was only two
years younger than Washington. The Grand Lodge of Scotland was formed in 1736,
two years after his birth, and the head of the elder branch was still the Grand Master
when he was bom. He came to America in 1758 as an ensign in the Royal American
regiment, known as the 60th foot, of which Colonel John Young, who had been for
thirty years the Deputy Grand Master of Scotland, was the colonel. The man who
succeeded Colonel Young was Colonel Augustine Prevost who was created a Grand
Inspector-General of the Scottish Rite by Stephen Morin in 1762, the same year in
which Arthur Saint Clair resigned his commission in the British army, married in
Boston, and became an American. There is no doubt but that he was a Master Mason at
that time, as there was a military lodge in his regiment of which Colonel Young was
the Master while Arthur Saint Clair was an officer.
He settled in the Ligonier Valley in Pennsylvania, near Bedford, and lived there for
twelve years. When the Revolutionary War broke out he joined forces with the
colonists to whom his military knowledge was of value, he being created a colonel of
militia in 1775. His being a Scottish Mason, or Mason of the Scottish Rite, brought him
in close connection with Washington whose lodge at Fredericksburg was also a
Scottish lodge with a charter from the Grand Lodge of Scotland as were the majority of
the lodges in America which favored the cause of the patriots. Such were the famous
St. Andrews' lodge of Boston, and the Provincial Grand Lodge of which Dr. Joseph
Warren was the Grand Master which organized lodges in all the New England colonies
and likewise in Virginia, North Carolina and others of the colonies.
The members of the English lodges chartered under the Grand Lodge of England were
Tories, almost to a man, while the Scotch lodges were nearly all revolutionists. I called
the attention of readers of THE BUILDER to the fact that we American Masons owe
but little to English Masonry, as most of the Revolutionary Fathers were Scottish
Masons and took their degrees in lodges which were chartered by the Grand Lodge of
Scotland. For these reasons, it is well to bring out the connection of General Arthur
Saint Clair with the Sinclairs of Rosslyn.
I was much interested in the account of the visit in Scotland of Grand Commander
Cowles of the Scottish Rite which was published in the July number of the "New Age."
Brother Cowles has been the Grand Master of Kentucky and in his article he called
attention to the similarity of the Scotch work with that of Kentucky while the English
work was much different. We owe our Masonry in America to Scotland, our work is
Scottish and not English, and this is as it should be. California work comes from a
Scotch lodge of Connecticut under P.G.M. Warren, Provincial Grand Master under
Scotland. Cyrus Field Willard, California.
* * *
A SKETCH OF GILES FONDA YATES
Interested by an item concerning Giles Fonda Yates that appeared in THE BUILDER,
April, 1922, page 125, brethren of the Valley of Schenecteday, New York, sent to us a
copy of their beautifully printed "Memorial of the Presentation of Charters" which
contained a condensed biographical account of Yates, all of which, as containing
valuable data concerning one of the most illustrious of Masonic careers, is here
GILES FONDA YATES, AND THE DELTA LODGE OF PERFECTION, NO. 1,
OF THE CITY OF SCHENECTADY
Condensed from an article by Isaac H. Vrooman, Jr., 32d, printed in the Proceedings
Council of Deliberation, State of New York, A.A.S.R., 1914, to whom due
acknowledgment is made.
Giles Fonda Yates was born in Schenectady, November 8, 1798, the son of John and
Margaret (Fonda) Yates. His great- great-grandfather, Joseph Yates, emigrated from
England and settled in Albany, in 1664, and his great-grandfather, Robert Yates, came
to Schenectady in 171 1. He was graduated from Union College in the Class of 1816,
with Phi Beta Kappa rank, and later received the degree of Master of Arts. He was by
profession a counsellor-at-law and held the office of Surrogate of Schenectady County
from 1821 to 1840. For many years he edited the Schenectady Democrat and Reflector,
and contributed to that paper an extensive and interesting series of articles on the early
history of Schenectady, which have formed the basis of most of the published history
of that city.
He was initiated an Entered Apprentice in Morton Lodge, No. 87, of Schenectady, on
October 23, 1820, and received the degrees of Fellow Craft and Master Mason on
October 27, 1820. On December 15, 1820, he was elected Senior Deacon of Morton
Lodge and the following year Senior Warden; to which office he was reselected in
1822, but was not advanced in 1823. On December 7, 1824, he affiliated with St.
George's Lodge, No. 6, but did not sign the by-laws until June 24, 1825. W.’.Bro.’.
Yates served as Master of St. George's Lodgre in 1826 and 1827, and again in 1844 and
1845, and was one of the survivors of the Morgan trouble who helped to keep Masonry
alive in Schenectady. He was also a Royal Arch Mason and Knight Templar.
It is not known when he received the Scottish Rite degrees but it must have been during
1821, for in the minutes of Ineffable Lodge of Perfection, Albany, under date of
January 31, 1822, he is recorded as Senior Grand Warden. For many years lll.’.Bro.’.
Yates was connected with the affairs of Ineffable Lodge of Perfection of Albany.
In the fall of 1 820, with the consent of its surviving members, the Lodge of Perfection,
which had become dormant, was re-established under the appellation of Delta Lodge of
Perfection, and placed under the jurisdiction of a Grand Council of Princes of
Jerusalem, which had been opened previously in the City of Schenectady. The minutes
of Delta Lodge of Perfection, Schenectady, are to be found copied in the Minute Book
of Ineffable Lodge, commencing October 5, 1821, and preceded by the stubs of two
leaves which have been removed. These stubs bear evidence of meetings having been
held in 1820.
Delta Lodge of Perfection continued to meet at Schenectady until 1825, when it was,
by the consent of its members, removed to Albany. lll.’.Bro.’. Yates was Grand Master
of Delta Lodge during the five years of its existence at Schenectady.
The only printed reference to Delta Lodge of Perfection is found in the Proceedings of
the Grand Chapter, R.A.M., of New York, under date of October 8, 1823, at an
"Emergency Convocation," called for the purpose of celebrating the passage of the
"first boat from the Grand Erie Canal into the Hudson River at Albany." "Delta Grand
Lodge of Perfection, No. 1, of the City of Schenectady," attended and joined in the
lll.’.Bro.’. Yates received the 33d on October 24, 1825, from lll.’.Bro.’. John Barker,
special Deputy of the Supreme Council of Charleston, S. C.
In 1828, when the two Grand Councils, Northern and Southern, agreed to a division of
territory, Brother Yates was, on July 6 of that year, "acknowledged and admitted" a
member of the Northern Supreme Council and Representative near it of the Southern
Supreme Council. Brother Yates' Patent of July 5, 1828, is in possession of St. George's
He was appointed M.’. 111. ’.Ins.’. Lieut.’. Gr.’. Com.’, on June 15, 1844, andM.’.
P.’.Sov.’. Grand Commander August 25, 1851, which office he at once resigned in
favor of 111.’. Edward A. Raymond. The latter, appreciating Brother Yates' great
services to the Supreme Council, appointed him 111.’. Grand Chancellor H.’.E.’. which
office, together with Deputy of New York, he retained until his death.
The latter years of his life were spent in New York City, where he took an active
interest in the local bodies of the Rite, and was appointed the first "Sovereign of
Sovereigns" of Cosmopolitan Consistory of New York City, at its organization in 1856.
He died December 13, 1859, in New York and his remains were brought to
Schenectady for burial. He was buried in the "Old Dutch Burial Ground" between
Green and Front Streets, and when, in 1879, the plot was sold by the Dutch Reformed
Church, his remains were removed to Vale Cemetery, where they now rest in what is
known as the Union College plot. Brother Yates was never married.
He was the author of a work entitled History of the Manners and Ceremonies of the
Indian Tribes. He was also engaged, for twenty years, in the compilation of a valuable
Repertorium of Masonry, which was left unfinished at the time of his death, and which,
according to his family, was stolen from his lodgings in New York after his death. But
most of his Masonic writings appeared in contemporary journals. Moore's Freemasons
Magazine and Mackey's Masonic Quarterly Review contain valuable communications
from his pen on subjects of Masonic archaeology, in which science he has no superior.
Mackey's Encyclopedia of Freemasonry contains many articles by him, especially on
the higher degrees. He was also a poet of no mean pretension, and an artist.
His character is best summed up in his own words. "I would fain have you believe, my
dear brethren," said he, "that, as a member of the Masonic Institution, if I have had any
ambition, it has been to study its science, and to discharge my duties as a faithful
Mason, rather than to obtain its official honors or personal benefits of any kind. Self-
aggrandizement has never formed any part of my Masonic creed, and all who know me
can bear witness that it never has of my practice."
* * *
DIFFERENCES AMONG SCOTTISH RITE SYSTEMS
A Masonic friend of mine who has been in Japan for some time told me of a case of
certain Jewish members of the lodge under the English Constitutions, in Kobe, who
were desirous of taking the Royal Arch, but it appears that a rule exists that no brother
can take this degree until he has been a Master Mason for a certain number of months.
These brethren proceeded to some place or other in the East where American lodges
and chapters were established and took, not only the Royal Arch but other degrees in
the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite coming back bestarred and bejewelled, with
any amount of degrees including, of course, the eighteenth, or Rose Croix. These, my
friend told me, cost in the neighborhood of $500 and were conferred one after another
in a few days. What I thought you might help me in is this: How on earth can a brother
other than a professing Christian possibly take the Rose Croix or eighteenth degree?
Does the American system differ in any way from the English and Scottish? I am a
member of the Alpha Chapter under the English Supreme Council (eighteenth degree
Rose Croix), and it seems to me that any one unable to subscribe to the essential
Christian doctrines could not possibly take the degree without turning it into a
blasphemous farce. Can you give me any information on this head?
William Moister, Editor Masonic Journal of South Africa.
The Scottish Rite degrees as practiced in England, Scotland, Ireland, and South Africa
are very different from the same degrees as practiced here; and in no degree is the
difference more marked than in the Rose Croix. With you, Brother Moister, it is
Christian and confesses Christ as Son of God and Lord of Glory: here it is interpreted
so as to be available to Jews, Free Thinkers, etc. The Jews referred to in your letter
were not at all hypocritical. It is hardly probable that they paid five hundred dollars for
initiation. Can any reader inform us if such high fees have ever been charged?
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YE EDITOR'S CORNER
Help! help! Such a flood of contributions has been pouring in this past year that ye
poor editor is swamped - or should one say drowned? This means that many
manuscripts wait a long time before seeing the light of day. Several brethren have
kindly consented to having their articles passed on to other Masonic periodicals.
* * *
Brother Arthur C. Parker, who has written for THE BUILDER some interesting items
on Indian Masonry, and four important manuscripts not yet published, has written a
book on "The Archeological History of New York." It is an important work.
* * *
Ye editor will begin a new series of Study Club articles next March on "Chapters of
Masonic History." He is attempting to write an authentic history of Masonry in
understandable language. Many erudite brethren, here and abroad, have been lending
him their counsels.
* * *
Ye editor and his associates have formed a conspiracy to make the January BUILDER
the best number yet published. It will be the ninety-seventh issue. We are growing old!
We are available for a few lectures - very few. For information address The Editor,
THE BUILDER, 2920 First Avenue East. Cedar Ranids. Iowa.